The injury situation going into Juventus’ trip to Southern Italy to face Lecce on Saturday night was about as bad as we’ve seen all season — which is saying something considering just how many players have missed time this year due to their respective ailments.
Coming out of the slim win over Lecce, things aren’t any better.
You can add Weston McKennie and teenager Samuel Iling-Junior to the list of those who are currently injured — which, as of this most recent count, has a whopping 13 players out due to one reason or another. (As far as we know, Manuel Locatelli will be back with the squad soon after Saturday’s game due to personal reasons.) Iling-Junior, who was the one who set up Nicolo Fagioli’s brilliant game-winning goal against Lecce, will be out three weeks with an ankle injury he suffered on a crunching tackle on Saturday, Juventus announced on Sunday. McKennie, meanwhile, will be out at least two weeks with a quad injury, according to Goal Italia’s Romeo Agresti.
Just when you think it can’t get worse ... it does. We are now to the point where a player in Iling-Junior who has been brought up to the senior squad to fill the spot of somebody who’s out injured is now himself getting injured and will see another one of his Next Gen teammates come up for the next few weeks.
The injury to Iling-Junior will almost certainly keep him out for the rest of the schedule of games before the World Cup break arrives. The McKennie injury could prove to be the same type of deal, with there suddenly being a whole lot of United States men’s national team fans sweating the status of one of their better midfielders’ fitness ahead of the World Cup.
For Juventus, though, it’s just another hit to what has been a brutal couple of weeks for injuries. We’re now closing in on half the squad being out injured — which is simply amazing considering how quickly it’s gone from just a few injuries to now things being in double digits. Not exactly what you want to hear knowing that the likes of Paris Saint-Germain, Inter and Lazio are still on the schedule before the World Cup break arrives.