Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal is understood to be open to joining Newcastle United this summer, but only if former Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri takes over as manager.
With Newcastle’s Saudi-backed takeover close to completion, plans for countless huge transfers are already being suggested. Philippe Coutinho and Kalidou Koulibaly have both been mentioned, and Vidal’s name has also popped up in the media.
According to Mundo Deportivo, the Chile international would be prepared to join Newcastle if he can be reunited with his old manager, but a move is currently unlikely as Allegri is not the favourite to take over.
Instead, former Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino is believed to be Newcastle’s preferred option, with the Magpies willing to make Pochettino one of the highest-paid managers in the world to move to St James’ Park.
If the Argentine does get the job, it seems like a move for Vidal would be off the table as he only wants to work with Allegri.
Vidal was already at Juventus by the time Allegri arrived in 2014 and they only spent one year together, but it was a successful season for both as Juventus made it all the way to the Champions League final.
Having spent several years in a deep midfield role under Antonio Conte, Vidal was moved into a more advanced role under Allegri, and his impressive showings earned him an eight-placed finish in the UEFA Best Player in Europe award race.
Bayern Munich came knocking and brought Vidal and Allegri’s relationship to an abrupt end, but it seems like the 32-year-old would be interested in a reunion.
Vidal is one of several players who have been heavily linked with a move away from Barcelona, with a switch to Inter (and a reunion with Conte) as part of a deal for Lautaro Martínez regularly discussed.
That definitely seems more likely than a switch to Newcastle, whose focus is not on Allegri. Pochettino is the priority, but Allegri is on their shortlist and could emerge as a real option if they cannot strike a deal with the former Spurs boss.