By Romeo Agresti
Alessio Tacchinardi believes that Goal 50 star Arturo Vidal is “irreplaceable” at Juventus, as Manchester United continue to hover over the Chile international.
Vidal, who finished ninth in Goal’s annual list of the 50 greatest footballers from the past season, is a summer target of the English giants and his future in Turin has come under increased scrutiny in recent weeks.
Tacchinardi, though, says that former club Juventus need to pull out all the stops to hold onto Vidal, who he believes is the best midfielder in the world.
"The Chilean has proven himself to be almost irreplaceable," Tacchinardi told Goal.
ALL OF OUR COVERAGE FOR THE 2014 EDITION
|CRISTIANO RONALDO WINS GOAL 50
|GOAL 50: THE COMPLETE COUNTDOWN
|'FOOTBALL IS IN MY BLOOD' - RONALDO|
|WHICH LEAGUE DID BEST IN 2014'S GOAL 50|
|OWEN: RONALDO THE COMPLETE PLAYER|
|DEBATE: IS RONALDO THE ULTIMATE PLAYER?
"Today he has no equal. When I am choosing players for my perfect squad, I look not only for leaders but also for plenty of goals, tactical balance and spirit.
"In short, he is an athlete and an incredible footballer. He is my favourite player."
Tacchinardi played for Juventus from 1994 until 2005, winning five Serie A titles and the Champions League.
Another former Bianconeri legend, Franco Causio, has echoed Tacchinardi’s view that Vidal could not be replaced were he to be sold this summer.
"He is the absolute leader in midfield, a great scorer, and he is able to galvanise his team-mates," he enthused.
"He is a born fighter and an indomitable warrior. He is a symbol and certainly one of the best players in the world in his role.
"With Paul Pogba and Andrea Pirlo, he forms probably the strongest midfield in Europe. He never gives up and he knows how to sacrifice himself until the end. He is truly exceptional."
HAVE YOUR SAY
Do you agree with our list of the world's 50 greatest players of the 2013-14 season?
Get involved via our Goal 50 section this month. Give us all your views on the debate by commenting below and by getting in touch on Facebook or Twitter using the hashtag #Goal50.