There were probably more than just a couple of moments Tuesday night against Bayern Munich where we thought something like "Gee, Giorgio Chiellini could have helped there!" or "I sure do wish Alex Sandro was playing tonight! Juve could sure use those cross..." Even with the 2-2 draw in Tuesday's first leg, there's no denying that two talented defenders could have helped the cause when facing such a talented and explosive attacking team like Bayern.
Fear not, loyal people, we won't be having those thoughts racing through our heads much longer.
Chiellini is back training. Alex Sandro is back training. Kwadwo Asamoah is back training. All three returned to training on Wednesday as Juve stepped onto the fields at Vinovo for the first time since their roller coaster-like match against Bayern the night earlier. From Juventus' official website:
Out on the Juventus Center pitches, with the previous evening's exertions still burning in their muscles, those that featured prominently on Tuesday night underwent a routine post-match warm down while the remainder of the squad focused on fitness.
Featuring in the latter group and providing the day's good news were Giorgio Chiellini, Alex Sandro and Kwadwo Asamoah, all returning to first-team training after their respective injury layoffs.
The Bianconeri will reconvene at the same time tomorrow morning to get the ball rolling on Sunday's Serie A preparations in earnest.
From one big game to the next.
Much like when Mario Mandzukic returned to training less than a week ago, having a player — or, in this case, three players — come back right after one game usually bodes well for the next one. So, in this case, because the trio of Chiellini, Alex Sandro and Asamoah are back to training right after the Bayern game, then the chances of them taking part in Sunday's game against Inter seem to have improve mightily compared to a few days ago.
Some thought that Sandro and Chiellini might recover from their respective injuries fast enough to be back for the first leg against Bayern, but that obviously didn't happen. Having them back for the Serie A/Coppa Italia double with Inter Sunday and Wednesday — and, maybe more importantly, the second leg against Bayern — will finally give Max Allegri a chance to rest some players and get the team back into the 3-5-2 formation that has been at the center of the club's success the last four months.
And let's be honest, you think Chiellini wasn't licking his chops every time he saw Arjen Robben making one of those classic kind of runs in which he scored his goal on Tuesday night? Yeah, I could see that happening — and then Chiellini envisioning a crushing tackle right through Robben's feet. Music to his ears.