Gonzalo Higuain has become “a burden” for Juventus as he struggles for club form and is overlooked by Argentina, says Fabrizio Ravanelli.
The 29-year-old has been prolific throughout a distinguished career, with his record convincing Juve to pay €90 million for his services in the summer of 2016.
He netted 32 times during his debut campaign in Turin, but has just two efforts to his name so far this term as Paulo Dybala steals the spotlight for the defending Serie A champions.
Ravanelli believes Higuain could now benefit from an enforced break, with his omission from the Argentine international fold having hit him harder than he would like to admit.
The former Juve striker told Radio Sportiva: “He’s really confused, he looks like a shadow of the Higuain we know.
“Allegri continuing to play him right now doesn’t help him, because he needs tranquility. His problem is more mental than physical.
“I think being left out of the national team hurt him, he should rest, above all his head. He should take a week’s holiday and then come back.
“He’s frustrated, he’s out of the game, he’s always trying to force it and he won’t help the team like that.
“I’d leave him out for the derby. I think he’s currently a burden for Juve, aside from the goals he’s scored he hasn’t been the Gonzalo we know.
“He scored an important goal in the derby last year, but from then on his performances have been disastrous.
“He needs to get back to being an important player, and this criticism than he can’t do it in important matches will certainly have hurt him: he’s struggling to score in the Champions League.
“All of this talk certainly won’t help him, but we know he’s a superstar, a top player, because Juve paid €90m for him.
“Unfortunately he’s not in condition to play right now.”
After netting in a 1-1 draw with Torino on May 6, Higuain ended last season with a six-game scoreless run.
Juve are due to face their cross-city rivals again on Saturday as they seek to make it six wins from six at the start of the 2017-18 campaign.