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Juve lose Chiellini for opening two months

MILAN, Aug 18 (Reuters) - Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini will be sidelined for up to two months after twisting his knee playing for Juventus. 'Fortunately the cruciate ligament is ok and therefore the big danger of missing the entire season has been avoided ... a huge weight has been lifted,' Chiellini told the club's official website. The player was carried off during the 4-1 friendly defeat by AC Milan on Sunday and initially feared his season was over before it had begun. Juve medical staff said he should be back in 45 to 60 days. The 24-year-old Chiellini had already pulled out of Italy's squad to face Austria in a friendly in Nice on Wednesday, with coach Marcello Lippi calling up Juve team mate Nicola Legrottaglie as a replacement. Chiellini, one of the few Italy players to perform well at Euro 2008, will also miss the World Cup qualifiers in Cyprus on Sept. 6 and at home to Georgia four days later.


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