Juventus Defender Giorgio Chiellini Is Serie A's Most Underrated Player

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Juventus Defender Giorgio Chiellini Is Serie A's Most Underrated Player
Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

You know the old adage: You don't know what you've got until it's gone.

Giorgio Chiellini tore his calf in training in late December, and Juventus hasn't been the same since. The report says it'll be three months before he's able to come back for the Bianconeri.

By then, the hole might be a little too deep for Conte's men to dig out of.

Frankly, the other Juve defenders are completely lost when filling in at Chiellini's left side on the back line. 

Their results without him tell the story.

They won away at Cagliari only after Davide Astori was shown the red card. With the opposition down to ten men, Juventus was able to tally three goals in the final 15 minutes. 

After the Winter Break, things started to go downhill.

Their shocking 2-1 loss to ten-man Sampdoria, their colossal struggle to overcome a sloppy AC Milan side in their Coppa Italia match on January 9, and then giving up a late goal against Parma en route to a draw? 

The two goals against Sampdoria and the one against Parma were caused by a lapse in defending on that left side. 

That's a tough stretch of results for the Old Lady, and the common denominator in the above fixtures: No Chiellini on the left.

So far this season, he wins an average of three arial balls a game, and has a passing percentage of 89 percent. His player rating on the season is right around 7.7 according to whoscored.com.

There will be plenty of you upset that a Juventus player is being characterized as underrated, the statement on it's face is egregious.

But of all the huge names on that roster, who would have thought Chiellini's injury would derail what was another sure thing for Juventus in this season's Scudetto race?

Sure, it hasn't happened yet. But the way things are going, it might be a lot closer a race than it should have been for the Italian giants. 

Who do you think is the most underrated player in Serie A?

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