(Reuters) – Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri is not worried about players being out of action as he grapples with a mounting injury list ahead of Monday’s Serie A match at Sampdoria.
Angel Di Maria, who suffered a thigh muscle injury on his Serie A debut after scoring one goal and making an assist in Juve’s 3-0 win over Sassuolo, is the latest player to be ruled out at the Turin-based club.
Other key absentees include midfielder Paul Pogba, whose return to Serie A has been delayed by a torn meniscus, and first-choice keeper Wojciech Szczesny.
“When there is a muscle injury at Juve, it is seen as a collapsing house of cards… (injuries) are part of the season, but I am not alarmed by all of this,” Allegri told reporters on Sunday.
“We do have attacking players, it does not matter how many forwards we have, rather how many players are attacking the area.”
Allegri said he hoped key forward Federico Chiesa, who has been sidelined with a torn ligament injury since January, would return before the start of the World Cup in November. Chiesa is expected to return by January at the latest.
“We cannot dream — I am very realistic — right now I cannot count on Federico. It is normal that it is like this,” he said.
Allegri added that he did not expect an easy ride in Juve’s first away game of the Serie A season as Genoa-based Sampdoria had played well in their opener despite a 2-0 defeat to Atalanta.
“Games are always difficult in Genoa, complicated, there will be moments when we will need to defend well. When they will gather up the courage (to attack) helped by the crowd, we will need to play well,” he said.
(Reporting by Silvia Recchimuzzi in Gdansk; Editing by Toby Davis)