Ladies and gentlemen, behold, the new season is almost upon us.
I say this not only because Juventus manager Max Allegri, via the club's official website, has announced the group of players who will be showing up for the first day of preseason training. All players will report to Juve's training facility at Vinovo, with the obvious absentees being those players who took part in the European Championship (or, like Paul Pogba and Patrice Evra, are still playing in the tournament). Also not there is midfielder Claudio Marchisio, who at last look is still on vacation with his family in Sardinia.
So now I'll stop rambling and looking at Marchisio's Instagram profile. Here's the list of players who Allegri will be screaming things at tomorrow's opening training session:
Mattia Del Favero
Mame Baba Thiam
As you can see, there are some names we know like Paulo Dybala, Alex Sandro, Daniele Rugani and new signing Miralem Pjanic. There's some former primavera players or youngsters signed over the last year or two who are back after loan spells, and other youngsters who will likely be a part of Juve's top youth squad come the start of the fall.
And surely, before it is all said and done this preseason, players will go back out on loan or even be sold off as Juventus' front office continues to shape the big team's roster before the season opener in August.
You know what the best part of this is? Juventus start preseason preparations on Wednesday. And that means we're just one day closer to the 2016-17 season actually beginning. Plus we'll have something other than transfer rumors to talk about — and that's always a good thing.