Juve made an attempt for the then Sporting CP youngster in 2003 before his move to Manchester United.
"When I was working for Juventus, I called Turin and said he was going to be the best player in the world, obviously behind [Diego] Maradona," Di Marzio told Marca.
“I negotiated a deal and took Cristiano to Turin in 2002 to sign for Juventus.
“But Salas didn't accept the swap deal. For a few million euros, Salas didn't want to go and he later ended up at River Plate.