clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

So where does Juan Cuadrado fit into Juventus' team puzzle anyway?

On the wing, stupid. Duh. It's obvious. (And I love puzzles!)

Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Out of all the players Juventus brought to Turin this summer, Juan Cuadrado is probably the most familiar amongst all of us loyal Serie A followers. We've seen some of the others play against Juventus, but none of them do so as many times as the speedy Colombian winger who used to rock a purple jersey the past couple of seasons.

We've seen him play against Juventus more than just a few times. We've seen him play well against Juventus, too. And, it won't be much of a surprise if you're paying attention to this chain, we've seen him play against Juventus somewhat recently. Like back in December of 2014 kind of recently. (That's not totally "recent," but it's within the last nine months, so that counts.)

On that day, Juventus and Fiorentina played out a scoreless draw that probably would have put me to sleep if it was a lunchtime kickoff in Italy, not a lunchtime kickoff here in the United States. It was ugly, there wasn't much of anything worth remembering going on, and it's not like it took myself all that long to be reminded of it.

But there's another video to show you all in this here post. It's from Cuadrado's Juventus debut, which occurred two weekends ago before the international break bored us all to death. Yes, he may have had an eight-month layover while he occasionally played games in a Chelsea uniform, but Cuadrado is back on Italian soil for the time being.

Cuadrado played all of about 20 minutes in his Juventus debut against Roma last weekend. You can understand why Max Allegri didn't just throw him to the wolves seeing as Cuadrado joined up with his new Juventus teammates just a few days beforehand. But come the end of the current international break, Cuadrado will have a few weeks at Juventus under his belt. Well, sort of seeing as he's currently learning the ways of Juventus while over half of his teammates are out on international duty.

The internal debate amongst many Juventini is just how Cuadrado, who is on loan from Chelsea and has option to buy next summer (because of course he is), will fit into Allegri's plans. Obviously we can't reach into Mad Max's mind and grab all the answers as we see fit, so we can rule that out.

But the thing about this transfer window was that Allegri was provided plenty of options. Not just within his favorite 4-3-1-2 formation, but also to bounce between formations in the same kind of fashion Allegri did last season. (That worked out pretty darn well, I might add.) And I feel safe in saying that

Cuadrado isn't a trequartista, which is something pretty much all of us can recognize, so it remains to be seen if Allegri will even think about trying him there. But we know that Cuadrado flat out fly in the same kind of way that the Roadrunner does as Wile E. Coyote chases behind without any kind of success.

Does that mean Juventus want Cuadrado to be a wingback and just have him bomb up and down the right wing in a 3-5-2 kind of formation? Or do they envision him as a an all-out winger if Allegri wants to go with a 4-3-3? This is the mystery (if you want to call it that) of bringing in a player like Cuadrado who is a quality player but obviously has a limited skill set that will keep him limited to a certain set of tactics.

But, the good thing is, he's versatile enough where it's not a one-and-done kind of situation as to where he's able to play. Yet he's not such a complete Swiss Army knife where can be deployed in any spot the midfield has to offer. This is what makes him such an interesting kind of signing, too. You know to some extent where he will play, but not we're not 100 percent certain at this point.

So where does Juan Cuadrado fit best? I guess we're going to find out soon enough.