Last January, Juventus fans were delighted with the arrival of Denis Zakaria. The club was in a dire need for a new midfielder, and the Swiss was apparently the right profile for the job.
Moreover, the 25-year-old came on a cut price deal as his contract with Borussia Monchengladbach was about to expire.
The midfielder had a memorable debut against Hellas Verona, putting his name on the scoresheet alongside fellow debutant Dusan Vlahovic.
Unfortunately, an injury derailed his momentum, and he was never able to get a steady run as a starter in Max Allegri’s formation.
Last summer, Juventus opted to sacrifice Zakaria to make room for new arrivals, while hoping to register a profit from his eventual sale.
The Switzerland international left Turin to join Chelsea on an initial loan deal just hours before the closure of the transfer market.
Zakaria opened up on his short stint at Juventus, explaining how the team’s playing style prevented him from showcasing his best attributes.
“It all happened very quickly. I didn’t know it was possible until six hours before the end of the market,” said the Chelsea man in an interview with Blick via ilBianconero.
“I packed my bags and waited for the contracts to be signed. Then I had medical examinations in Turin and everything went well.
“It’s hard to say what went wrong. Maybe it wasn’t my style of football. The team played very low, I didn’t have much space, while I’m a player who needs lots of spaces to run. The Premier League could suit me better.
“Allegri is a good person, I can say this with certainty. Maybe the team didn’t play very well, which is a shame.
“But with the squad they have, they can do much better. Juventus should always be at the top of the table and win 3-0 in all games. Allegri has achieved great results, but I haven’t talked much with him.
“Tuchel was one of the reasons I joined Chelsea. He’s a great coach. We haven’t had much time with him, but this is football, it all goes fast.”