It’s completely normal for big clubs such as Juventus to let their players leave on loan in order that they either obtain valuable experience or with a view to a potential permanent move. During 2017/18, the Bianconeri allowed eleven of those registered on their books to move to other clubs on a temporary basis, with one of those catching the spotlight.
Striker Gonzalo Higuain was first sent off to AC Milan, where it was expected he would make the permanent move to San Siro. Yet that was not the case as he failed to find form with the Rossoneri, and Juve subsequently agreed to terminate the loan and arrange an alternative move to Chelsea, where he was reunited with former boss Maurizio Sarri.
In many ways, allowing Milan to be excused from their mandatory option to buy the Argentine was a mistake, one that has now seen the misfiring player reportedly refuse to leave Turin. The Old Lady are currently lumbered with his €7.5 million per season in wages, meaning that they are having to consider letting another player leave in his place.
That man may well be 19-year-old Moise Kean. The youngster is reportedly subject to interest from Arsenal and Everton in the Premier League, as well as Sevilla and Borussia Dortmund abroad. It may be common practice to let a player such as Kean – with only a handful of first-team appearances to his name – leave on loan, but he is not just any youngster.
The star striker was initially noticed by Juve’s cross-city rivals Torino at the age of 14, but he was unable to go and play for the Granata as he could not afford to pay for travel from his home in Vercelli. It was then that the Bianconeri stepped in, paying his fees in order that he signed a contract with them.
His talent was such that he would make his professional debut at just 16 years and 23 days old in November 2016, becoming Juve’s youngest-ever debutant and the first player born in this millennium to compete in one of Europe's top leagues. Just two days later, Kean was named as the first player born in the 2000’s to compete in a Champions League fixture, as he was introduced as a substitute in a 2-1 win over Sevilla.
It was during the final game of the 2016/17 campaign when the striker became the first player born after 2000 to score a goal in any of Europe’s top-five leagues, firing in the winner in a 2-1 win away to Bologna. Breaking those records may have turned out to be a flash in the pan, but this was not the case.
Following a year on loan to Hellas Verona, Kean returned to Juve for 2018/19, and fired in a brace versus Udinese in March. His performances were enough to have convinced Italy boss Roberto Mancini to hand him a maiden start in their opening Euro 2020 qualifier versus Finland on March 23rd.
In doing so, the 19-year-old Kean became the youngest forward to start a match for Italy since Edoardo Mariani in 1912, and he duly repaid the faith shown in him by Mancini by finding the back of the net, becoming the second youngest scorer for his country since Bruno Nicole opened his account for the Azzurri back in 1958.
“I always try to be ready and train regularly so that I’m prepared when the time comes," the striker told RAI Sport at the time (via BBC). “More than being happy, I find it extra motivation to keep working hard. There are many more records for me to beat and I intend to beat them.”
With all things considered, it’s not difficult to see why reports in the Italian press suggest that Juve are insisting on a fee of €30 million for Kean, with an additional buy-back clause inserted into the deal. This would ensure that the player could return to Turin for around €40 million, a safety net in order that the club avoid losing their star altogether.
Taking the chance to sign this player, even with the possibility that his current club may opt to make the repurchase in a year’s time, should be snapped up by the sides that are interested.
Moise Kean is no ordinary loanee. Instead, he truly is the real deal.