The good thing: We finally know what, exactly, is up with Stephan Lichtsteiner's health.
The bad thing: We won't see the Swiss Express bombing up and down the right flank for the next month because of it.
Sometimes you gotta take the bad with the good. Two-way street here, people.
Juventus announced on Friday that Lichtsteiner, who had come off the field at halftime against Frosinone due to difficulty breathing and subsequently spent the night in the hospital, has undergone a heart procedure that will keep him out for the next 30 days. Here's the club's official statement:
During last week's match with Frosinone Stephan Lichtsteiner suffered breathing difficulties due to a benign cardiac arrhythmia (atrial flutter) which later stopped of its own accord.
Tests and specialist consultancy conducted over the following days suggested surgery to be the best course of action for the defender.
Dr. Gaita today performed a cardiac ablation operation and Lichtsteiner is expected to return to competitive action within 30 days.
Okay, so whenever I hear or read about "breathing difficulties" and "cardiac arrhythmia," I pretty much think that Lichtsteiner needs to take as much time as he needs. This isn't a pulled hamstring or a tweaked muscle that will almost certainly recover and then the player is back on his way. When it comes to having trouble doing what you need to do to stay alive, then it's serious. This diagnosis might not be as bad as it could have been, but you don't risk that kind of stuff.
If it's 30 days, six weeks or three months, Lichtsteiner's health is the top priority.
And if this means that Max Allegri uses the 3-5-2 a little bit more than before, I'll be a little more accepting of that. You should, too. It's not like this is something that could have been prevented. It's just ironic that it happened to a player who always get plenty of praise for his relentless stamina and lungs of steel.
So get well, Stephan Lichtsteiner. And may you come back when you're 1,000 percent ready.