Perhaps the biggest transfer in the history of the Argentine Primera División has finally been sealed after months of speculation as Juventus reached an agreement with Boca Juniors for Carlos Tevez to return to La Bombonera after more than ten years. Terminating his contract a year early to secure a return, Tevez is expected to be unveiled as a Boca player on July 7th when he was already scheduled to take part in a testimonial for SebastiánBattaglia. It is understood that promising 18-year-old striker Guido Vadalá has gone the other way in addition to Juve having first option on other youngsters, Franco Cristaldo,CristianPavónandRodrigoBentancur.
Tevez’s return to Boca was an eventuality given that the player has always stated his desire to finish his career where it began. This is a career path common to many Argentine footballers; a final hoorah in the colours of the club they have supported since childhood. However, the case of Tevez is unique given this is a 31-year-old, current Argentina international, who has just finished as his club’s leading scorer in a season in which they won a league and cup double and reached the final of the Champions League.
Boca are getting a player, more or less, still in his prime and desperate to wear the club shirt again and it would appear for very little. An inital price of around €6 million had been mentioned during the initial discussions but the confirmation of the deal has no information about a fee and instead only states that 18-year-old Guido Vadalá will move to Turin.
Vadalá is very highly regarded by Boca and made a name for himself last year when he scored seven goals in one youth match against Argentinos Juniors. First team opportunities have been much harder to comeby given the wealth of options that Rodolfo Arruabarrena and so using him in a deal that sees Tevez return is clearly a no-brainer. Juve also having the first option on Cristaldo, Pavón and Bentancur is also no real sacrifice to Boca given that if any of the three are deemed good enough to make a switch to Europe, Boca would still receive a fee.
Boca’s Copa Libertadores campaign ended in disgrace but they are well placed for a title challenge in the league and with Carlos Tevez leading the attack, they would have to now be installed as favourites to lift the trophy. The return of El jugador del pueblo in this transfer window is a shock but a welcome boost to the Primera, which will do no harm in raising the profile.