Archive for August 23rd, 2007

When the season hasn’t started and the infirmary is already too crowded…

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

You’d think that if anyone was going to be out injured for 4+ months, fate would at least give them a couple of games into the season before striking down its merciless hand. Not so, fate doesn’t discriminate against time. The Serie A season hasn’t even started yet, and the big teams already have to face the problem of sending their players to the doctor.

The latest additions to the list aren’t light in nature, and provide somewhat of a crippling injury to the teams involved and to make matters worse, the players come from a section of the team roster which hasn’t been particularly brilliant these last few weeks. I am talking about Juventus and the Italian national team

Materazzi’s out for at least 3-4 months… :(Yesterday, at half-time of the abysmal Azzurri effort against Hungary, Inter and Italy defender Marco Materazzi was stretchered off after an opposition player fell on top of him. “Matrix” suffered a strong contusion to his right thigh, and the severity of the injury didn’t become clear until the 34-year-old lost consciousness and began vomiting on the sidelines. Yup, that bad. Apparently the main problem was a ruptured vein in his thigh muscle, resulting from internal bleeding after the serious trauma.

The injury is very similar to the one occurred by former Juve and Italy international Antonio Conte, who had been out several months following a strong blow to his leg in the 1996 Juventus-Ajax Champions League final. It’s not looking good at all for the Azzurri defense, who after the international retirement of Nesta and now the injury of one of their top-form defenders (Materazzi will have to sit out at least 3-4 months) is left with very limited options. With Cannavaro out chasing butterflies lately, and the limited international experience of Barzagli (Materazzi’s most likely replacement) , we might be needing divine intervention to keep the goals out of the net against France. :cry: That, or hope that Gigi will play Superman again.

Zdenek Grygera, recent Juve acquisition from AjaxMeanwhile, Juventus are having problems of their own. After Criscito, it’s Zdenek Grygera‘s turn to be taken out on the sidelines following an injury suffered in the friendly match Czech Republic-Austria. It looks like Ranieri will be forced to turn Chiellini into a central defender again (now a fairly familiar role for the youngster, since the Serie B campaign) and pair him up with Jorge Andrade. The Bianconeri coach is optimistic, but I don’t share his confidence too much… I’m still waiting for Juve’s illusionary last-minute signing in defense. Sigh.