Ever since we saw Claudio Marchisio writhing in pain on the Juventus Stadium turf back in late-April, we’ve been waiting for the day that he made his return. May went by. June went by. July went by. Gone were August and September. We knew that was going to be the case, so no surprise there.
October was the month we always heard about as the earliest time of the year that Marchisio’s lengthy rehabilitation would come to an end and he’d be back in the fold, back to the player that we have come to know and appreciate for some many years prior.
It’s October. Juventus has a game. And Marchisio has been called up.
.@OfficialAllegri names a 2⃣1⃣-man squad for #JuveUdinese: https://t.co/olUmWZKt0u #FinoAllaFine #ForzaJuve pic.twitter.com/Okxr4rCCJF— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) October 14, 2016
That’s a trifecta that all of us should be happy about.
The long wait is finally over, as Juventus manager Max Allegri has included Marchisio as part of the squad that will take on Udinese at Juventus Stadium on Saturday night in the first game back from the international break. His six-month absence has come and gone, and now Marchisio begins one of the final steps he needs to make before he becomes a fixture in Juventus’ starting lineup once again.
"Marchisio had a good 45 minutes with the reserves, but we must look out for unforeseen dangers with muscle problems. The ideal scenario would be to give him a bit of time during the forthcoming matches, as all the others are available.
"Marchisio is an important available player, one of the most important players for the years to come, but I will always exercise caution when a player returns from a cruciate injury. You have to be cautious and careful, his knee has healed but after six months of inactivity, other issues can occur."
It’s been a long road back to full fitness for Marchisio, who will turn 31 in January. There have been many days away from his teammates as he went through his individual rehabilitation routine. There have been many Instagram stories posted documenting his recovery process from the ACL injury he suffered last April against Palermo on the same Juventus Stadium field that Juve will play on come Saturday night.
But with Marchisio taking part — and scoring a goal — in Juve’s 45-minute-long training match against local outfit Pro Settimo Eureka on Wednesday afternoon, you had a feeling that his return to the regular setup was sooner rather than later.
⚽️ Back amongst the goals already! @ClaMarchisio8 scores in today's warm-up match. ⚪️⚫️ #FinoAllaFine #ForzaJuve pic.twitter.com/04qjdHODaz— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) October 12, 2016
That day is now here. Well, at least the day that we know Marchisio has officially been called up and included in the Juventus squad once again. After waiting for his comeback for months, waiting to see what his role will actually be these next couple of games will seem like a cakewalk. I’d rather sit back and know that Marchisio is completely healthy again rather than knowing that day is two or three months away.
Welcome back, Claudio. We’ve missed you so much. So very, very much.