For just about the entirety of the 2015-16 season to date, Juventus has operated with four strikers on its roster. No matter the base formation that has been used, no matter who has or hasn't been healthy at the time, it's been four strikers and then a wild card winger in the form of Juan Cuadrado and his afro of awesome tagging along for the fun. It's been a number we haven't seen Juve work with in recent years, with a standard group of five strikers being the norm as long as we can remember.
Does that mean come the opening of the winter transfer window in a little over a week mean Beppe Marotta will be on the lookout for a little more depth up front? According to reports out of Italy Wednesday, if Juventus do choose to go in that direction, it could very well be a familiar face, too.
Yes, Alessandro Matri-Juventus rumors are back for the second straight winter, with both calciomercato.com and the Gazzetta dello Sport saying that the Serie A champions could bring back one its midseason acquisitions from a year ago next month. Both outlets say that a move for Matri — who is on loan at Lazio from Milan — could be very much tied to the future of one of Juve's current strikers, Simone Zaza, who has been rumored to be on the way out seemingly since the inked dried on his contract over the summer.
But I'll pose this question: Even if Zaza does end up staying right where he currently is when the winter transfer window comes to a close at the end of January, would signing Matri on another six-month loan be something you would object to?
Think about it. Of all the rumored moves that have been bandied about the last couple of weeks, this one easily makes the most sense. It would not only mean Juventus would have some more depth when it comes to starting the new year with a full allotment of strikers, but it would also come at a time when Juve will be contending on three fronts come the resumption of play in January. There would be one more option to prevent Paulo Dybala and/or Mario Mandzukic from shouldering all of the load in the second half of the season — something that could happen with so many big games on the horizon in the new year.
Matri knows Juventus, and obviously Juventus knows Matri. There wouldn't be any kind of adjustment period for the player or worrying about how Juventus manager Max Allegri would use Matri if he were to sign with the club again. Just as was the case last season, he knows he wouldn't be first choice. And hey, as we've already seen, Matri can come through in the clutch every now and then when needs be. That certainly counts for something, and is definitely an attribute that would be a big sticking point in targeting for another second-half loan spell.