It may seem like ancient history now, doubly so given how well Aleksandar Kolarov’s return to Serie A has gone, but back in the summer Eusebio Di Francesco seemed willing to double up on Roma’s Pellegrini quota, giving Luca Pellegrini a serious look during the pre-season, with an eye on stealing some minutes behind Kolarov.
Unfortunately, the younger of two Pellegrini’s fell prey to Roma’s ACL monster, becoming it’s 12th or 13th victim (who can really keep count these days), putting an unlikely but exciting story on the shelf for a few months. Whether it was due to his age or advancements in medical technology, or simply the fact that the good folks at Villa Stuart are now experts at this, Pellegrini returned to action late last month, making his return to Roma’s youth team.
While it was a far cry from the Champions League, it was nevertheless good news for Pellegrini and Roma as a whole; the mere fact that an 18-year-old kid was even in the first team discussion warrants celebration. And, wouldn’t you know it, a mere 44 minutes into his season debut against Milan’s munchkins, Pellegrini went down again.
The good news, to the extent that it exists in this story, was that Pellegrini’s surgically repaired ACL remained intact; the same can’t be said for his left knee cap—it’s broke, fractured to be exact. Pellegrini underwent surgery earlier today and is looking at two months on the sideline.
Was he rushed back too soon, or was this a freak injury independent of any antecedents? Hard to say, but what always flummoxes me is how, when an NBA, NFL or MLB player tears his ACL, it’s an automatic season ender, yet we continually see footballers comeback from the same injury in as little as five months. Could this be part of Roma’s problem? Are they doing too much too soon?
In any case, the future remains bright for Luca Pellegrini, it’ll just be delayed another year, as his 2017-2018 league season is essentially lost.
God’s speed Luca, Kolarov won’t remain young forever, we’re going to need you sooner rather than later.