Following a disastrous first season at Barcelona, Miralem Pjanic was desperate for an exit, and a return to Juventus was on the cards. Although the potential transfer was discussed throughout the summer, the deal never materialized.
The Bosnian was left disappointed, as he was hoping to reunite with his former manager, Max Allegri. The midfielder arguably played the best football of his career under the tutelage of the Italian manager between 2016 and 2019.
Luckily for the former Lyon and Roma man, he was at least able to escape his miserable Camp Nou experience under Ronald Koeman, as he completed a loan move to Turkish side, Besiktas.
“Besiktas wanted me strongly in the last days of the transfer market and I couldn’t stay in Barcelona with Koeman, I would have lost another year and I didn’t want to,” Pjanic told Tuttosport as translated by Football Italia.
“Koeman had an attitude with me that no one understood, not even [Lionel] Messi. Leo, last year, told me several times: ‘But why doesn’t he let you play? Has something happened?'”
“Besiktas are the Turkish champions, they are in the Champions League and… they have a black and white jersey. They welcomed me in a great way, it will be another great challenge.”
Despite joining the Turkish champions, the playmaker was hoping to join another black and white club.
“With Juve there have been contacts and appointments with my agent, but the transfer market is never easy,” Pjanic revealed. “I would have liked to come back and I would have done everything to reunite with Allegri, a guarantee.
“No one is better than him in these situations. Max makes all the players feel important and he doesn’t deny anyone a chance.
“He takes the lead mentally and the team feels stronger because of it. I consider him number one, he’s a coach who talks to you for better or for worse.
“I love Juventus, I’m attached to the fans and I have an excellent relationship with President [Andrea] Agnelli. But in football you have to look ahead and I want to get some great satisfaction with Besiktas.”
Pjanic also gave an advice to his former teammate, Paulo Dybala, whose currently discussing a new contract with the club, while also revealing that he enjoyed playing alongside him even more than Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi.
“Dybala has a heavy weight on his shoulders, but he’s already a champion. I was lucky enough to play with Ronaldo and Messi.
“Cristiano and Leo are two extra-terrestrials, but Paulo is the one I had the most fun with. It was as beautiful as it was easy to find him between the lines and if you ask him for the one-two, you know the ball with be perfect.
“Dybala is a top player, but just like everyone else, he needs a strong team. I would advise him to stay at Juventus, where they love him. But these are personal choices, difficult to judge from the outside, because sometimes one feels the need for new challenges.”