Gianluca Busio has grown into a consistent starter for Serie A club Venezia, but the American midfielder could now be faced with a spell on the sidelines.
Busio was substituted at halftime on Saturday in the club’s eventual 3-1 road defeat to Sassuolo with an injury. The former Sporting KC midfielder started for Paolo Zanetti’s side, but suffered an early knock in the match, which eventually forced him out at halftime.
Busio’s injury was a tough blow.
In the second half, we haven’t had the same balance. Especially difficult with Vacca also missing tonight.
Just as Zanetti seemed to have found his best midfield in Busio, Vacca, and Ampadu.
75’ | Sassuolo 3-1 Venezia#SassuoloVenezia
— Venezia FC (@VeneziaFC_EN) October 23, 2021
Despite a 32nd-minute opening goal from Venezia’s David Okereke, the visitors pulled one back when Domenico Berardi scored in the 37th minute. Sassuolo scored twice more in the second half to claim its second win out of the past five matches.
Busio left the match at halftime, ending what looked to be a promising performance by the 19-year-old. Saturday marked Busio’s eighth league appearance for the club following his transfer from MLS, all of which had been starts.
“We had the right initial approach in a difficult arena against a team that has a lot of quality,” Zanetti said in a postmatch interview. “Unfortunately, until the own goal we were more than in the game and could even have gone into the break 2-1 up, as the goalkeeper performed a miracle. That would’ve made it a completely different match.
“I will be honest, I did not like our attitude after we conceded in the second half,” Zanetti said. “We weren’t as aggressive as usual and also lost Gianluca Busio to injury.”
Busio helped Venezia to a 1-0 league win over Fiorentina on October 18, playing 90 minutes in his central midfield position.
Busio remains an option for the U.S. men’s national team after playing out the final 12 minutes of a 2-1 World Cup Qualifying victory over Costa Rica back on October 13.
The knock Busio suffered on Saturday will bear watching, with the next round of World Cup qualifiers three weeks away. The USMNT faces Mexico on November 12 in Cincinnati before traveling to Jamaica for a November 16 clash.
Venezia sits in 16th place in the Serie A standings, two points clear of the relegation zone.
Venezia has a quick turnaround, hosting Salernitana on Tuesday before matches against Genoa and AS Roma.