Marko Pjaca is healthy again. That’s the most important thing to know about the young Croatian winger as the 2017 calendar year comes to a close.
However, when it comes to where he may be playing the second half of the 2017-18 season, it’s no lock that it will be in Turin while waring bianconero. Or in Italy as a whole.
According to both Sky Sport Italia and Italian journalist Romeo Agresti, three teams are interested in bringing the 22-year-old Pjaca in on loan come the January transfer window. None of them play in Serie A and are scattered across Europe. They are: Zenit St. Petersburg, Schalke and Monaco.
You might be telling yourself that those three clubs are quite the random assortment of clubs for Pjaca to join on loan, and you wouldn’t be wrong there.
But all three very well may allow Pjaca to get the playing time that doesn’t seem to be likely with Juventus’ roster currently constructed the way it is.
And, for what it’s worth, Max Allegri did address Pjaca’s current status during his pre-match press conference on Friday:
The last part of the final sentence, in English, is what matters the most: “He needs to play.”
And you know what? He ain’t wrong.
As it stands right now, there are four wingers ahead of Pjaca in the pecking order: Mario Mandzukic, Juan Cuadrado, Douglas Costa and Federico Bernardeschi. Throw in Paulo Dybala as well, who has played much of the season behind Gonzalo Higuain in a 4-2-3-1 up until his recent benching. You don’t need to look any further than Bernardeschi to see that playing time in that group is rather hard to come by.
Now, as is the case with Pjaca, there’s another piece added to the puzzle. It’s going to be quite difficult, even with Juventus currently competing on all three fronts with their latest Coppa Italia defense starting up, to find regular playing time in that group.
Who knows, at this point, what the playing time situation will be at the three rumored clubs listed above. But it’s not like it’s going to be solved with the snap of your fingers at Juventus — which makes it seem like a loan move to another club, be it in Italy or somewhere else in Europe, is the best thing to get Pjaca’s post-knee injury career going once again.