Erik Palmer-Brown to Juventus rumors have been around for a long time now. A year ago we were able to confirm that Juventus was actively seeking to acquire Palmer-Brown. Now it sounds like it will become a reality.
Sporting Kansas City CEO Robb Heineman told reporters that the deal was likely, "I'd say it's an 80-20 thing that it'll happen. I think they're interested. I think the player's interested in going there and I think the way that it would work out, there's probably a good likelihood we'd still retain him as a player, even if they had ownership of his card."
Palmer-Brown turns 18 in May and cannot be officially transferred according to FIFA rules until that time, which is at least one reason neither side has been in a rush to get the deal done.
"I am focused on now, not really looking to the future," Palmer-Brown replied when asked about going to Italy. "I am focused on what I can do to better myself as a player right now, really just living in the moment. "
Juventus is regularly one of the top clubs in Italy and they are known for turning out good defenders but Palmer-Brown is happy where he is at now, "Sporting Kansas City is easily, in my eyes, one of the top clubs in the United States. Being here has only bettered myself as a player. "
When pushed for what he wants in the future, Palmer-Brown does not bite and brings it back to the here and now. "I'm more focused on now because I am a teenager. I'm still going through high school, struggling to get grades back up when I am on the road. That's a big thing for me," explained Palmer-Brown.
It is easy to overlook the fact that the homegrown defender is still just a teenager and faces all the normal teenager problems in addition to playing a professional sport.
"It's a challenge but I have a great supporting cast, my family, my friends, my teammates, my coaching staff. Everyone is helping me," Palmer-Brown acknowledged. "My school has done an unbelievable job working with me after missing so many days. It is humbling to me and makes me feel wanted here at home."
If the deal goes through and Palmer-Brown does end up with Juventus, at least it will not be his first trip. "I've been to Italy before for a national team trip and it was a great experience," and importantly, "had some gelato. "
No matter what happens, the young defender wanted to reiterate, "It's a job. Wherever you are at you have to go there to work. Whenever my name is called I have to be ready to step up, I can't have the shocker I had in Chicago again. I've got to be ready."