Is the man Arsenal missed Juventus’ next €100m superstar?

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Football Italia, Goal.com and The Sun are all repeating a rumour supposedly started in Spanish paper AS regarding a €100m Real Madrid move for Juventus striker Paulo Dybala, though it’s unlikely to be completed any time soon.

Los Blancos and neighbours Atletico Madrid are currently under a transfer ban until January 2018 for breaching regulations, after Barcelona served the same sentence for similar offences during 2015.

Nevertheless, Real are reportedly lining up a bid similar to the new world record set by Manchester United when capturing Paul Pogba during the summer, with the second and third most expensive players on the planet –  Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo – both residing at the Bernabeu.

Dybala, who turns 23 next month, was repeatedly linked with a move to Arsenal during his final season with Palermo, when the six-cap Argentina international scored 13 Serie A goals and laid on 10 assists.

The lure of the Old Lady proved too strong for the Gunners to compete, with Dybala firing home another 19 Serie A goals in just 34 games during his first season at Juve – 29 of them starts – following a €32m switch from the Stadio Renzo Barbera in the summer of 2015.

Only Gonzalo Higuain – now Dybala’s forward partner for club and country after his €90m move from Napoli over the summer – scored more in the Italian top flight last term, with a mocking tally of 36.

At more than six years younger, Dybala has time to catch up to his compatriot, but the Cordoba native will need to look a little sharper in Europe before being considered among the world’s best.

Having bagged just once in seven Champions League appearances last term – five of them from the off – getting off the mark for the campaign in his side’s 4-0 win away to Dinamo Zagreb suggests improvement, as Dybala’s sole continental goal in 2015/16 didn’t arrive until February.

Juventus are 12/1 to win the Champions League for the first time since 1995/96.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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