There were two general reactions from those of us who weren't watching Juventus-Bayern Munich live at Juventus Stadium when we saw Claudio Marchisio subbed off even before the second half got started. For one, we were wondering what the heck happened to Marchisio. And secondly, the other response was easily, "Hernanes?!?!"
You had to think that Marchisio was taken off the field by Max Allegri because he was injured. There was no other way that seemed logical when you consider what was going on in the game and how important his role to this Juventus team really is.
Well, after Marchisio underwent tests Thursday to see the extent of his injury, we got some good — if there is something like that — injury news. While Marchisio will miss the Serie A/Coppa Italia back-to-back matchup against Inter Milan Sunday and Wednesday, that's just about all he will be absent for. More, courtesy of Juventus' official website:
Claudio Marchisio this morning underwent medical examinations that ruled out any muscular tears.
They did however show up an overloaded vastus lateralis muscle in the midfielder's left thigh. He is expected to make a full recovery within the next seven days.
Excuse me while I take a huge sigh of relief on this one. When you see a player like Marchisio, who is so incredibly important, subbed at the half of a big-time European game like Tuesday night's showdown with Bayern Munich was, you get the weird yet creeping suspicion that the injury could result in a decent amount of time away from the field. All we heard from the Italian media during the second half and after the game was "muscle strain" — which, as we've learned this season, could mean a wide variety of things.
Being out for seven days isn't necessarily something you would file under the category of "decent amount of time" per se, and I am pretty sure when I'd say that if the alternative was Marchisio being out for both Inter games and the second leg against Bayern I would take what's now in front of us.
Having Marchisio miss any period of time isn't good, but my worst fears — and probably yours, too — have been averted. There are some important games over the next seven days, but that seven days could have been two or three weeks or more than that. And when Juve players wake up in the morning Friday, they'll be one day closer to seeing Marchisio back in the starting lineup. Hey, it could be worse.