It may be nearly midnight in Italy, but as we all know, the transfer business never sleeps. Earlier this week, Roma reportedly submitted a four-year, €24 million contract offer to former Juventus playmaker Paulo Dybala. And for the past few days, we stewed on that rumor: Was that enough cash to lure La Joya to the capital? Would he prefer to follow in Diego Maradona's footsteps at Napoli? Was Inter Milan lurking in the background all along, laughing as Roma got their hopes up, knowing that Dybala was theirs all along?
While I'm afraid we don't have answers to those questions yet, transfer mastermind Gianluca Di Marzio provided a new wrinkle to the story as the rest of Italy sleeps.
#Dybala, la @OfficialASRoma ha offerto tre anni di contratto (a 6M bonus compresi) e spera in una risposta positiva, definitiva e finale, in queste ore ⏳@SkySport #calciomercato— Gianluca Di Marzio (@DiMarzio) July 17, 2022
Earlier today, we passed along word of a tête-à-tête between Roma GM Tiago Pinto and Paulo Dybala's agents, during which the two sides were expected to trade salary figures for the 28-year-old free agent. Speculation held that Roma offered a €4.5 million base salary with an additional €1.5 million in performance-related bonuses, while Dybala's camp remained firm in their demand for a €6 million base salary. It wasn't necessarily an impasse but certainly enough to threaten a deal that felt close to completion.
According to Di Marzio's Tweet, Roma has scaled back the length of their offer (three years vs. four) while presumably including easy-to-achieve bonuses that would bring the total salary to Dybala's preferred six million figure. While he didn't speculate on the reason for the decreased length of the deal, Di Marzio claims the next few hours will “be decisive” for Dybala and Roma.
You know what I'm going to say... stay tuned.