Juventus head coach Andrea Pirlo is counting on Weston McKennie’s contribution to the team as the reigning Italian champions try to close the 10-point gap on Serie A leader Inter Milan despite the player needing rest.
Speaking to the press on Monday ahead of Juventus’ league game against Spezia, Pirlo once again stressed how the team has been hit by a rash of injuries to some of its key players. Alvaro Morata, Paulo Dybala and Arthur have all been struggling to return to full fitness.
As for McKennie, who according to reports in the past week had been suffering from a hip problem, he is likely to return to the starting lineup on Tuesday night, although Pirlo has expressed concern about his fitness.
“Weston McKennie is feeling better even though he’s been playing a lot of games,” Pirlo said. “He could do with some rest, but in a moment like this we need his contribution.”
Apart from the usual exploits of Cristiano Ronaldo, McKennie has been a revelation for the Bianconeri this season following his loan from Schalke. He has proven to be a versatile player in the midfield, having gone on to play in 30 games and score five goals in all competitions.
Juventus will need all the help it can get in March with a busy schedule looming. Following its game against Spezia, Juve has scheduled encounters against Lazio, Cagliari and Benevento in Serie A. Maximum points will be on the agenda as Juventus looks to cut into the points deficit in order to have any chance of lifting a 10th consecutive Scudetto.
The Turin-based team also has the Champions League on their plate as they will go into their second leg contest against Porto looking to overturn a 2-1 aggregate scoreline.