Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi: How could Juventus line-up for 2020/21 season?


Juventus are reportedly in the hunt to sign Lionel Messi this summer. Yeh, seriously.

It seems as though the entirety of European football turned to their accountants and wondered 'what if?' when the news broke on Tuesday night that Messi submitted a transfer request to Barcelona.

Nevertheless, there are only a select number of clubs on the continent that have both the sporting and economic appeal to attract Messi and you have to say that Juventus is one of them.

Messi to Juventus?

It goes without saying that Manchester City remain the firm favourites to welcome him with open arms this summer, but L'Equipe are reporting that Juve have thrown their hat into the ring.

It was explained in the French newspaper that Juventus had made a 'discreet approach' to Messi's father and agent, Jorge, in order to form a 'super-team' with Cristiano Ronaldo.

And although everybody is thrilled about the prospect of Messi playing in the Premier League, seeing him share a dressing room with Ronaldo is surely even more exciting still.


How Juventus could line up in 2020/21

It would take some serious financial shuffling and some outmanoeuvring of City at the negotiating table, but we're satisfied that Messi plying his trade in Turin isn't completely impossible.

As a result, forgive us, because we can't resist putting our tinfoil hats on and speculating what a Juventus XI would look like with both Messi and Ronaldo going into the 2020/21 season.


GK - Wojciech Szczesny

Arsenal must be kicking themselves that they ever allowed Szczesny to stroll outside the Emirates exit so easily, because he's become one of Europe's most underrated goalkeepers at Juventus.

Plus, even if you don't think Szczesny is deserving of a place in the starting XI, Juventus casually have one of the greatest shot-stoppers in history - none other than Gianuigi Buffon - to call upon.


RB - Nelson Semedo

We couldn't go through this entire Juventus XI without adding a summer signing other than Messi and there's no denying that the right-back position has been an Achilles' heel for the club.

Juan Cuadrado and Danilo have done solid enough jobs on the defensive flank, but we think Semedo, who is on Barcelona's transfer list, could be the long-term purchase that Juve need.


CB - Matthijs de Ligt

To tell you the truth, De Ligt didn't really set the world alight during his first season at Juventus, but he's shown enough flashes of brilliance to remind us all why he's one of the sport's most exciting young players.


CB - Leonardo Bonucci

Credit to Juventus because they have plenty of options at centre-back and we could easily have picked elder statesman Giorgio Chiellini or the hugely-talented Merih Demiral to partner De Ligt.

Nevertheless, by our estimations, Juve will have at least another season with one of the legendary 'BBC' members in their back-line and Bonucci, 33, still has plenty of quality in his legs yet.


LB - Alex Sandro

Sandro seems to spend more time being linked with other European clubs than necessarily tearing things up for Juventus, but the Brazilian is a sound enough option at left-back to warrant his place.


CM - Dejan Kulusevski

Perhaps not a name that rolls off the tongue for supporters less familiar with Serie A football, but the Swedish midfielder is returning to Turin off the back of a stunning loan spell with Parma.

We discovered just yesterday that stats ranked Kulusevski as the world's 15th most complete player during the 2019/20 season, notching up an impressive 10 goals and eight assists from deep.


CM - Adrien Rabiot

Picking this Juventus midfield is incredibly tough because there's about one million options and few of them really leap off the squad list, but we're giving Rabiot the benefit of the doubt here.

Although the former PSG midfielder had a pretty nondescript debut season at the Allianz Stadium, we're predicting him to kick on enough in 2020/21 to oust Aaron Ramsey and Rodrigo Bentancur.


CM - Arthur Melo

There were enough cracks in Juventus' midfield last season to suggest that any change is worthy change, so chucking ex-Barcelona general Arthur straight into the starting XI makes perfect sense.

Arthur would serve as the ideal connective issue to Messi deep in the midfield and offers the sort of metronomic passing, hence his 'Next Xavi' moniker, that can prove so deadly in Italian football.


RW - Lionel Messi

This feels so wrong, but so right. While the image of Messi in a Juventus jersey doesn't seem to compute, the prospect of him destroying defenders in Serie A makes reads true in my mind.

Messi might not have the pace and energy of Federico Bernardeschi on the right flank, but he'll constantly wander into the centre and surpass 20 goals and assists with his playmaking brilliance.


ST - Cristiano Ronaldo

You'd be forgiven for thinking that father time was finally catching up with Ronaldo after his first season at Juventus, but the five-time Ballon d'Or winner was simply unstoppable during 2019/20.

The thought of what Ronaldo could achieve next season now that he's settled in Italian football and potentially with Messi firing passes into him is both terrifying and sensational in equal measure.


LW - Paulo Dybala

What a difference a season makes. It's only been a year since Dybala was almost sold to Tottenham like it was absolutely nothing, but now the prospect of him leaving Juve would be debilitating.

Dybala was voted the Seria A's most valuable player during 2019/20 after scoring 11 goals and providing eight as well as having experience playing alongside both Messi and Ronaldo already.


Full starting XI


GIVEMESPORT's Kobe Tong says

If Juventus pull this off, they might as well pre-order the Champions League trophy.

Look, there's no denying that Juventus have some weak points in their squad, largely central midfield and the defensive flanks, but it's impossible to look past that remarkable front three.

I'm sorry, but there's only so far you can go wrong with arguably the two greatest footballers in history, still in Ballon d'Or-contesting form, causing chaos in the same attacking line. 


At the very least, they would score 50 goals between them and you can probably chuck in another 15 strikes from Dybala, which is enough to blow most European front-lines out of the water.

Don't get me wrong, it's hard to see a world in which Juve could support both Ronaldo and Messi's wages, but the fact it's even vaguely possible is enough to turn me into a hyperactive fangirl.

Come on, Juve, make it happen. You know you want to.

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