Real Madrid and PSG wanted Pjanic, claims former Juventus team-mate Benatia

The Bosnia-Herzegovina midfielder has struggled for consistent form in Serie A this season, but is apparently admired by the world’s top clubs

Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain have both held interest in Juventus midfielder Miralem Pjanic, according to former team-mate Medhi Benatia.

The Morocco centre-back, now plying his trade with Al-Duhail in Qatar, says Pjanic receives offers to leave Serie A in every transfer window.

Since joining from Roma in 2016, Pjanic has made more than 150 appearances for Juventus in all competitions, winning the Italian title in each of his three completed seasons at the club.

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“He still has three years on his contract and Juve are doing well,” Benatia told Tuttosport.

“It is true that in every window he has the chance to leave: PSG are interested in him, and before that even Real have looked at him but, in the end, he has stayed with the club.

“His love for Juventus, where he feels confidence, prevailed: in the dressing room he is one of the leaders, he knows how to make himself heard and respected.

“But, we know, situations can change; the club could decide to sell him.

“But if it depends on the player, he will stay in Turin.

“He never told me he wanted to move; on the contrary. With Juve he changed his mentality: now he plays to win, always.”

Pjanic’s form at Juve has been up and down so far this season, but the same can be said of a number of players still adapting to Maurizio Sarri’s tactical philosophy.

Benatia has no doubts over his enduring quality, and he thinks the coronavirus-enforced break in the Serie A season could prove an opportunity for Pjanic to reset and rediscover his form when he returns.

“Mire is always able to find you a solution when there are opponents pressing,” Benatia added.

“He has more quality than the others. [Rodrigo] Bentancur has a bright future ahead of him and will become one of the best, but at the moment he is still a step below.

“He is also self-critical. I called and complimented him on a game, he was tense and said he played badly because he had lost two balls in dangerous areas.

“This stop will do him good to return to being the strongest in Italy and among the best in the world.”

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