Juventus have emerged as the frontrunners to sign Real Madrid’s James Rodriguez, after Bayern Munich reportedly cooled their interest in signing the Colombian permanently.
Rodriguez has been on loan in Bavaria since 2017 on a two-year loan deal, and an option to buy the player outright for €35m is known to be included in his contract.
However, the Bundesliga champions have made no indication that they are willing to exercise this right to buy the 27-year-old, and this has led to speculation of a new club following his potential return to Madrid.
According to reports from Italy, as relayed by Football Espana, this has peaked Juve’s interest, and the Serie A leaders have now emerged as the favourites to sign James should Bayern turn down the opportunity.
The report claims: “The Old Lady’s sporting director Fabio Paratici is set to hold talks with the midfielder’s agent Jorge Mendes at an event in Dubai, where the possibility of a transfer will be discussed.”
The former Monaco man has made just 11 appearances across competitions so far this season, providing three goals and two assists, amidst an apparent falling out with Die Roten manager Niko Kovac.
However, that number has been affected by a knee injury sustained at the end of November, which forced him to return to Spain for treatment.
It was confirmed the playmaker would be out for several weeks, though fortunately this has coincided with the German league’s winter break, meaning he will not be needed again until January 18 at the earliest.