'We need his contribution' - Pirlo suggests McKennie will start for Juventus against Spezia

McKennie Juventus
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The coach feels the United States midfielder is in need of a break after a busy spell

Andrea Pirlo has admitted to facing a dilemma over Weston McKennie, who he feels requires rest but is needed in “this emergency period.”

Juventus trail Serie A leaders Inter by 10 points, but can cut that gap to seven if they win their game in hand.

Pirlo has been hit by a string of injuries to key players, with Alvaro Morata, Paulo Dybala and Arthur among others struggling for fitness, and McKennie may face Spezia on Tuesday despite his coach having concerns over his fitness.

What was said?

“McKennie is better, but he too has come from many matches and always has this flare-up,” Pirlo said at a news conference on Monday.

“But in this emergency period we will also need his contribution.”

What else did Pirlo say?

With Morata and Dybala struggling for fitness, Pirlo was asked about the possibility of Federico Chiesa being deployed as a second striker alongside Cristiano Ronaldo.

“No, Chiesa is not conceivable as a second striker,” Pirlo said. “He is playing well in his position on the wing and will continue to play in that position. 

“Today Morata trained a little with us, tomorrow morning we will see whether to put him on the bench to have him available. We will know only in the morning.

“There’s no news on Arthur, we hope to have him back as soon as possible.”

A big month for Juve

Juventus are faced with a huge month which could be pivotal in their bid for honours on the domestic and European stage. 

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After facing Spezia on Tuesday, Juve welcome Lazio to Turin and also face Cagliari and Benevento in Serie A before the month is out.

They are getting to the stage where they cannot afford dropped points such as against Verona on Saturday if they are to win the Serie A title for a 10th season in a row, while they take on Porto next week trailing 2-1 from the first leg of their Champions League tie.

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