For the past couple of years, it’s been a game waiting to see what Giorgio Chiellini is going to do when it comes to his future.
Will he stay on with Juventus and play one more season? Will he, as he gets closer and closer to his late-30s, decide that the physical toll on his body isn’t worth it anymore and hang up his cleats for good? Or will he, as has been reportedly been thrown out there on a handful of times by the Italian press, extend his career another season but do so abroad?
Looks like we have an idea of what’s coming next.
According to Sky Sport Italia on Thursday night, the 37-year-old Chiellini has decided to leave Juventus at the end of the season despite the fact that he’s got a contract that runs through the 2022-23 season. But this will not be the end of the road for Chiellini, who has been Juventus’ captain ever since Gigi Buffon’s first farewell in 2018. Instead, Chiellini is likely to play on in the United States with a couple of Major League Soccer clubs reportedly interested in trying to bring the veteran defender in once his deal with Juventus comes to an end in a matter of weeks.
As you might expect, Juventus adding a central defender during the upcoming summer transfer window has suddenly become a lot more of a major need, according to Sky Italia.
While we wait to see who that central defender may be — most notably a decision from Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger, who is reportedly set to make his decision in the next few weeks — it’s suddenly coming down to the final few weeks of Chiellini’s long and storied Juventus career if this does turn out to be true. With Italy not qualifying for the World Cup later this year, it does make sense that this is his play now rather than grinding through another Serie A season. Considering his age and long injury history, there’s only so much left on those tires of his, so if he wants to experience something new in the United States, he might as well do it now.
And, the best part of it is, he will be able to say his farewell to Juventus with a stadium full of adoring fans now that the stadium restrictions have been completely lifted.
It’s hard to put into words what Chiellini has meant to this era of Juventus football. Going from talented youngster to being moved to a central defender by Claudio Ranieri to becoming one of the best in the world at his position and thriving alongside Andrea Barzagli and Leonardo Bonucci, Chiellini has done just about everything during his time in Turin.
Unfortunately, that time is going to be coming to an end soon because Father Time is still undefeated. So cherish Chiellini in a Juventus jersey while you still can because it looks like we won’t have many more chances to do so.