MELBOURNE — Manchester United target Paul Pogba is among 13 players left out of Juventus’ squad for their trip to Australia for the International Champions Cup.
France midfielder Pogba and Italy skipper Gianluigi Buffon have been given an extended break by the Serie A champions after representing their nations at Euro 2016.
It means Argentina striker Paulo Dybala, on-loan Moroccan defender Medhi Benatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina midfielder Miralem Pjanic will spearhead their team for matches against Melbourne Victory (July 23) and Tottenham Hotspur (July 26) at the MCG.
– JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) July 17, 2016
Sources have told ESPN FC that United are looking to re-sign Pogba this summer as manager Jose Mourinho plans for his first season in charge at Old Trafford.
Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci, Andrea Barzagli, Simone Zaza and Stefano Sturaro have also been given a rest while Claudio Marchisio will continue his recovery from injury in Italy.
Germany’s Sami Khedira, Switzerland’s Stephan Lichtsteiner, France full-back Patrice Evra and Mario Mandzukic of Croatia also miss the preseason trip for the ICC.
The absences are not surprising given the taxing schedule of Juve players over the last 12 months.
From the club’s first preseason match in July 2015 through to the end of the European Championship this month, seven Italian internationals were eligible for 71 matches for club and country.
Juve will return to Italy on July 31 and Massimiliano Allegri should then have his full squad at his disposal from the start of next month, to prepare for a record sixth-straight Scudetto bid.
ESPN FC’s Italy correspondent Ben Gladwell contributed to this report