• Zaza still fourth choice at Juve despite best minutes per goal ratio

    Zaza still fourth choice at Juve despite best minutes per goal ratio

    • Lorenzo Bettoni (@lorebetto)
    Simone Zaza’s 21 goals in 69 games with Sassuolo over the last two seasons convinced Juve to sign the 24-year-old on a € 18 million deal from the Neroverdi side last summer.

    At the beginning of the season, Zaza struggled to adapt to life at the Juventus Stadium as Fernando Llorente was part of the Old Lady’s attacking pack alongside Mario Mandzukic, Alvaro Morata and € 40 million signing Paulo Dybala.

    After two months of intensive summer training sessions, Zaza seemed not to be ready to be part of Juventus’ squad with Marseille and West Ham United that were ready to put the player under contract.

    Former Sassuolo star turned down both clubs’ approaches as he wanted to play his cards with the Old Lady.

    Eventually, he was right.

    Llorente left the club instead of Zaza at the end of the summer transfer campaign, heading to Sevilla FC on a free transfer and Zaza was – and still is – Massimiliano Allegri’s fourth option up front.

    Hold on, don’t get confused. 

    Despite Zaza’s status at the Stadium, he is the Juventus player with the best minutes per goal ratio this term.

    Zaza has netted one goal every 91 minutes, none has recorded such a similar rate at the club thus far. Paulo Dybala and Mario Mandzukic have one every 143 and 158 respectively, while Alvaro Morata has found the net of the goal once every 380 minutes.

    Not only, Zaza is also the only Juventus player who has scored at least one goal in all competitions this term.

    So, what about his future at club?

    Italy head coach Antonio Conte thinks extremely high of him, though he told Zaza that he needs to play on a regular basis if he wants to be part of the Azzurri squad for EURO 2016.

    Saussuolo President Giorgio Squinzi ruled out his return in exchange of Domenico Berardi yesterday but a lot of Serie A sides are interested in the player’s services as well as Premier League’s Waltford and Stoke City.

    Despite his stunning minutes per goal ratio, Zaza will remain Allegri’s fourth choice up front for the rest of the season and Ezequiel Lavezzi might put some extra competition into Juventus’ changing-room, in case he’ll sign with the Old Lady in January.

    Circumstances given, should Zaza wait for his turn at Juve or should he leave to play on a regular basis?

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