A report in Italy claims defender Luca Pellegrini rejected an opportunity to join West Ham United on loan this summer to fight for his place in the Juventus first team.
The 22-year-old has been with the Old Lady since 2019 after moving from Roma but has yet to make an appearance. The left-back spent the 2019-2020 campaign on loan with Cagliari, making 22 starts among 24 Serie A outings. It was his second stint with Gli Isolani after spending the second half of 2018-19 on loan at the club.
Returning to Juve in the summer of 2020, he was again frozen out of the first-team picture. The Italy international was sent to Genoa last term but made only 11 top-flight appearances for the Stadio Luigi Ferraris side.
And it seemed as though he was set for another temporary spell away from Juventus Stadium during the summer window. The Hammers were linked with a loan swoop towards the end of August but nothing materialised.
Both West Ham and Sampdoria were said to be keen but he rejected their overtures to remain in Turin. The website states he wants to battle for a Juve spot despite a ‘tough pecking order’ to climb at the club.
And that desire to play in black and white may be rewarded this weekend, with rumours he will feature against Napoli. The Bianconeri face the Naples outfit on Friday evening, looking for their first win of the fledgling season.
Massimiliano Allegri’s side drew 2-2 at Udinese and lost 1-0 at home to Empoli. They are already five points off the pace having surrendered their dominance of Serie A to Inter in 2020-2021.
Pellegrini still has much to prove
Pellegrini is a talented youngster who has already made his Azzurri debut. He featured as a substitute as Italy beat Estonia 4-0 in a friendly last November.
But Juve have left him out of their Champions League squad for this season’s competition. He will need to impress during the first half of the domestic season or risk being loaned out in January.
It is not known if West Ham would try to take him to the London Stadium in the winter. They have made a solid start to the season, with seven points in the bag already.