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Pepe may need op to cure thigh problem

Juventus midfielder Simone Pepe may require surgery following yet another injury setback.

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Pepe, 29, has made just one brief substitute appearance for Juve this season after initially suffering a thigh injury in a pre-season friendly.

Growing increasingly frustrated by the injury, the Italy international told Sky Italia that the latest relapse will most likely need an operation in order to speed up his recovery.

"We are currently trying to solve some problems I have had," Pepe said. "Luckily I have received the support of my team-mates and the fans.

"I want to thank them because I wouldn't have been able to carry on without them. I have relapsed four times in my rehabilitation so I think there will have to be a small operation. Once that's done, hopefully I can return to playing as soon as possible."

Juventus general manager Beppe Marotta said the club will continue to support Pepe with his rehabilitation, adding: "We want to show our support to a guy and a professional that has given a lot to Juventus. We will be at Simone's side for the course of this journey that awaits him in the coming weeks.

"Unfortunately, we haven't been able to use him at all this season and his absence has been felt. We hope that his ordeal is coming to an end, at least from a medical point of view. We are confident and we wish Simone a swift recovery."

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