Juventus clearly look like a team in transition right now. To be fair, that is what they are under greenhorn coach Andrea Pirlo, who is still trying to perfect the system he wants his team to play in.
As a result, the record-breaking Serie A winners have made a pretty slow start to the defense of their title. To add to that, a 2-0 loss to Barcelona in a highly-anticipated Champions League game at home, was proof that Pirlo's wards still have a long way to go.
To be honest, the Juventus board knew they are taking a gamble on Pirlo, a legendary player with no coaching experience. He has been bogged down by injuries and illness-induced absences, most notably in the form of Cristiano Ronaldo, who is still in quarantine after testing positive for COVID-19.
Juventus' struggles at home against a Barca side fluent on the night, but undergoing their own transition, doesn't augur well for the club. The team were regularly outplayed in midfield, which is concerning because two of their most expensive players play in the center of the park.
We look at Juventus' most valuable players, who will need to step for the team this season, in this list.
#5 Rodrigo Bentancur- €50 million
A versatile and tenacious midfielder, Rodrigo Bentancur has been a regular fixture in central midfield for Juventus since 2017 and has already won three Serie A titles with the Bianconeri. Bentancur was started with Adrien Rabiot in the center of the park against Barca and had a poor game by his standards.
However, capable of playing as a deep-lying regista, a more advanced attacker and in defensive midfield, the 23-year-old is one of the most sought-after midfielders in the world right now.
#4 Arthur Melo- €60 million
It is telling that we don't have a picture of Arthur Melo in a Juventus shirt. He has not played enough times for the club and hasn't done anything of note in the five appearances he has made for the club since moving to Turin in a much-publicized swap move that saw Miralem Pjanic move to Barca.
It is even more telling that the skillful midfielder has only played 18 minutes for Juventus in the UCL despite the club suffering from a lack of passing cohesion against Barcelona for long stretches of the game. Only time will tell if his tenure at Juve under Pirlo becomes a success with time.