Weston McKennie: Juventus sign US midfielder from Schalke

Weston McKennie of FC Schalke 04 controls the ball during the Bundesliga match between FC Schalke 04 and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim at Veltins-Arena on March 7, 2020 in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.

Juventus have signed US international midfielder Weston McKennie from Schalke for a loan fee of £4m.

The Italian champions have the option to make McKennie's move permanent for a fee of up to £22.7m, while the 21-year-old's switch will automatically become permanent if certain unspecified clauses are met.

McKennie's signing is Juventus' third of the summer, after the arrivals of Arthur from Barcelona and Felix Correia from Manchester City, and the first since Andrea Pirlo replaced Maurizio Sarri as head coach.

Schalke's head of sport, Jochen Schneider, said: "The agreement we have made with Juventus is the most financially beneficial for Schalke and the most attractive sporting move for Weston.

"Obviously deciding to let go one of our most talented players like Weston is partly down to the financial state the club is in."

Schalke - who have not won a Bundesliga game since January - already had debts in the region of £175m before the coronavirus pandemic struck so will be hoping McKennie's departure helps to ease their financial problems.

McKennie's arrival in Turin could help Juventus fill the gap left by fellow midfielder Blaise Matuidi, who joined Inter Miami earlier this month.

McKennie, who has 19 caps for the USA, joined Schalke from Dallas in 2016 and went on to play 91 times for the club.

Southampton held talks about signing McKennie during this transfer window, while he also turned down a move to Hertha Berlin.

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