For the last seven years we’ve seen Stephan Lichtsteiner sport bianconero on the club level. It’s fit him well — and that’s not a jab at how adidas jerseys are less snug than Nike jerseys — and he’s basically become a prime example of what we want from the players who wear said colors on a year-to-year basis.
Come the start of next season, Lichtsteiner’s club jersey is going to be the same color scheme — and just as snug because Puma gonna Puma — as the one he has worn for years on the international level.
Lichtsteiner, one of the Magnificent 5 that has been around for all of Juventus’ seven straight Serie A titles, is a Juve player no longer. Not just because he told us about a month ago that he was leaving Turin come the completion of the 2017-18 campaign. But also because Lichtsteiner and Juventus alike announced that the 34-year-old Swiss right back has signed with Arsenal on a free transfer.
This will take some getting used to. I’m gonna lie to you, folks. This will take plenty of time to get used to even though the Arsenal kit doesn’t look too far off from the one Lichtsteiner wears while on international duty and one he will sport in just a few short days at the World Cup in Russia.
But we knew this day was coming. We knew this day was coming because Lichtsteiner told us so. We knew this day was coming because the terms of Lichtsteiner’s contract also told us so.
And yet, still, it will take some getting used to.
Lichtsteiner accomplished so much during his time in Turin. He was the perfect person who exemplified the “If he’s on his team you love him, if you play against him then you hate him” theory about athletes. For all of his interviewing and cigar-smoking exploits off the field and Mallorca-related comments to Sami Khedira, that happy and smiling Lichtsteiner was never there on the pitch. He’s brash, he’s the annoying gnat that never goes away.
Basically, he’s Stephan Lichtsteiner.
For that, we were lucky to have him wear a Juventus jersey for as long as he was.
Thank you, Steph. I will miss you and your marauding runs up and down the right wing. I will miss the reactionary gifs of him telling the opposing team how many goals Juventus have just scored or the random of yelling at opposing players ... or refs.
That is the beauty of Lichtsteiner. That is the beauty of the guy who at long last, stabilized Juventus’ right back position for the better part of the last decade.