• Serie A

Juventus cool on Drogba deal

ESPN staff
January 5, 2013
Didier Drogba has been persistently linked with a move back to Europe © PA Photos

Antonio Conte has denied Juventus are interested in bringing Didier Drogba to Turin but says Fernando Llorente represents "an appetising prospect" for the club.

The Bianconeri have only made one signing since the winter transfer window opened - a loan move for Atalanta defender Federico Peluso - but are widely expected to strengthen their attack.

Drogba, currently with Shanghai Shenhua, has been linked with the club in recent months while Athletic Bilbao revealed Llorente had begun talks with Juventus over a move as his contract expires in June.

Conte, speaking at a press conference ahead of this weekend's match against Sampdoria, said: "If the opportunity arises to bring players in then I'm confident we'll make the right moves. I really believe in this group and nobody will be leaving in January.

"I keep reading about Drogba, but the club never proposed him to me or vice-versa. There are economic parameters to be taken into account. Transfers must be intelligent and low-cost.

"Llorente is a Spanish international and has done very well at Bilbao, so he is an appetising prospect. If we have the chance to sign a big player on a free transfer and he chooses us, then good.

"I can certainly say that, a year ago, Llorente wouldn't have taken us into consideration, but we are back to a high level and are now very appealing to big players."

Asked if he would be surprised to see Llorente arrive this month, Conte replied: "Yes, because he is an Athletic Bilbao player."

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