Mario Mandzukic Injury: Updates on Juventus Striker's Calf and Return

Gianni VerschuerenFeatured ColumnistJanuary 29, 2016

ROME, ITALY - JANUARY 20:  Mario Mandzukic of Juventus FC in action during the TIM Cup between SS Lazio and Juventus FC at Stadio Olimpico on January 20, 2016 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images)
Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images

Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic suffered a calf injury during the Coppa Italia triumph over Inter Milan and is set for a spell on the sidelines.

Continue for updates.

Mandzukic Suffers Calf Tear

Friday, Jan. 29

As revealed by Juventus' official website, Mandzukic is expected to miss up to a month of action after tearing his gemellus muscle, which is a big blow to Juventus' bid to win major silverware in 2016.

The Croatia international has been in strong form since moving to Turin from Atletico Madrid and has struck a solid partnership with fellow summer arrival Paulo Dybala.

The news he's set to miss up to four weeks of action couldn't come at a worse time for Juventus, who are on an impressive domestic winning streak and will face his former club Bayern Munich in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League. 

He's also likely to miss the vital Serie A clash with Napoli on February 13. The Partenopei currently lead the standings, sitting two points ahead of Juventus.

Mandzukic is yet to find the net in 2016, per, but he has been an important part of Massimiliano Allegri's squad, regardless. His high work rate in the attacking third and physical approach make him the ideal partner for the tricky Dybala, and the two have found each other perfectly in the past few months.

With Alvaro Morata struggling for form and Simone Zaza yet to prove himself for the Bianconeri, Mandzukic has been the obvious choice to partner Dybala, and there's little doubt he's eager to impress against former club Bayern Munich. The 29-year-old will have to recover ahead of time to face the Bavarians, however, with the first leg of their tie taking place on February 23.

Morata broke his dry spell with a brace against Inter in the Coppa Italia and is the likely candidate to replace Mandzukic up front. The Croat's injury may be the opportunity the Spaniard has been waiting for, and an extended run of matches could see him return to form.