Ex-Juventus Scout Recalls Bellingham and Haaland Talks

Matteo Tognozzi recently left Juventus, where he spent six and a half years, serving as the head scout for most of his stint, to become Granada’s sporting director. He spilled the beans on some deals that didn’t come together in an interview with TuttoSport.

“Jude Bellingham is one of my regrets. He was close in 2019. I met him and his extraordinary family. However, he simply decided to continue his growing process at his club, Birmingham.”

Tognozzi said Juventus had a real shot at Erling Haaland.

“It was November 2017, and I had just joined. He was one of my first contacts. You generally have time to work on the signings with the first team, while everything can change in a few days with the youngsters. We had him, but he would have played with the Primavera squad, so his purchase was deemed too expensive for that purpose.”

“He was still a back-up for Molde at the time. He started scoring a few weeks later, and everybody swooped in. A club like RB Salzburg was able to guarantee him a quick insertion into their first team.”

Tognozzi recounted how Juventus snatched Kenan Yildiz.

“We onboarded him on a Bosman deal from Bayern Munich while they were negotiating the acquisition of Matthijs De Ligt. The media were saying he was close to Barcelona, and we let those rumors spread. We were afraid it could have repercussions on an €80M sale.”

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