During the summer at Sport Witness we said a couple of times that, reading between the lines, it seemed to be Juventus and Arturo Vidal's agent who were leading the efforts for a Manchester United transfer. The Italian press were either being economical with the truth or they were being fed information from Fernando Felicevich about talks with Juventus and interest from elsewhere. It was noted more than once that Vidal himself was doing little or nothing to stop the rumours when a few words from him could have killed the whole thing dead. Even in his fan-pleasing interview with Tuttosport last week, Vidal said all the right things about loving Juventus but still had a passage where he refused to rule out a move to Manchester United.
The comments from Juventus during the summer all seemed to be along the lines of 'Arturo Vidal isn't on the market, but...' - in that a caveat was almost always added.
Juventus wouldn't look to sell but if a player asked to leave it was different. Juventus didn't want to lose their best players but if someone offered a ridiculous amount it would be hard to turn down. Vidal was happy with Juventus but if he told them things were different then it could change.
There was a suspicion that if Manchester United waved around €45m under the noses of Juventus then the Turin club would snatch it away rather quickly, whilst at the same time bemoaning the fact the Premier League has more money and can attract the best players.
The problem was that Manchester United didn't make that offer, Louis van Gaal and co were concerned about the midfielder's knee according to reports in Chile and there was every reason for them to be. Vidal had allowed, or even encouraged, a haphazard approach to his knee injury which cast doubt over his fitness. So far this season the midfielder has managed to complete just one game for Juventus, back in August.
An unrelated injury has been covered but Vidal has also found himself on and off as a substitute and it's not all related to injury and fitness. At the weekend Vidal didn't start the match against AS Roma and it wasn't a huge shock. He's slipped slightly in his terms of importance to the team, although obviously still a good player.
Since then the reason for his absence has been better explained. Vidal was involved in an altercation in the early hours of Friday morning, there's proof with photographs timed at 5.20am showing the Chilean outside a nightclub in the middle of strife. Juventus had training later than day, Vidal was late and perhaps not in the best state.
Gazzetta dello Sport explain on Tuesday that Juventus have lost patience. They say the player's unprofessional behaviour will lead to a €100k club fine but also accelerate the beginning of a possible divorce from the club. The newspaper say this is the first step to a parting of the ways which could happen as soon as January. It's even claimed that Juventus boss Marotta will open the door to buyers, regardless of whether Vidal lets the club know he wants to move or not - it will be Juventus initiating the sale ahead of the player.
The only condition is €45m. Juventus still want the sum they did in the summer, it works out to be £35m and for that Manchester United can have Vidal. Manager Massimiliano Allegri won't stand in the way, even if there were a pretence he had such power, because he feels betrayed by Vidal's nightclub antics before such a big game. It's also not the first time the player has been late for training... in a week.
Vidal himself doesn't seem too bothered, Gazzetta say he was out clubbing again until gone 5am on Monday morning, as he and other South Americans prepared to travel for international duty.
£35m in January and Vidal is a Manchester United player, but are there now other concerns as well as the player's knee?