15.04.2014 10:18 - in: Other competitions S

    #TalentTrack, weekend round-up

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    Progress reports on four Bianconeri youngsters gaining first-team experience away from Turin: Lanini, Leali, Magnusson and Untersee

    The latest installment of Talent Track keeps tabs on four rising Bianconeri stars, on loan or co-ownership deals, who continue to make impressive strides with their current clubs.

    Young forward Eric Lanini celebrated his return from injury by helping AC Prato to a 3-2 victory over Salernitana, heading the second in Sunday’s mid-table tussle contested on Tuscan soil.

    The 20-year-old, who joined the Bianconeri youth academy at the age of 13, is co-owned by Juventus and Palermo but has gone out on loan to get some invaluable first-team experience under his belt.

    Since arriving at the Lega Pro Prima Divisione side, Lanini, who can operate either as the main frontman or support striker, has scored seven goals in 20 games. He will now be hoping to increase his tally after overcoming an ankle injury which kept him sidelined for two months.

    Over in Serie B, Italy Under 21 goalkeeper Nicola Leali stole in the show in Spezia’s 2-0 win over Cesena, pulling off a number of sensational saves against the playoff contenders to boost his own side’s hopes of a place in the end of season promotion pack.

    Having made his top-flight debut with Brescia at the tender age of 18 during the 2010/11 campaign, Leali’s undoubted potential attracted the interest of Juventus, who moved to tie him down to a permanent contract in June 2012. Since then, he has gone on to feature for Lanciano, with whom he earned the title of Serie B’s goalkeeper of the season, before moving on to current club Spezia.

    Helping Leali to last Friday’s impressive defensive shutout was Hordur Magnusson. The versatile Icelandic Under 21 international defender, who joined Juventus midway through the 2010/11 campaign, made his 28th appearance and second consecutive start for the Aquilotti.

    During two full seasons with the Primavera side, Magnusson lifted Viareggio and Coppa Italia trophies and trained alongside Antonio Conte’s first-team squad in both Dubai and Chatillon.

    Completing a Bianconeri trio on the Ligurian sea is on-loan Brazilian midfielder Gabriel Appelt Pires, who started on the bench against Cesena.

    In Switzerland, Joel Untersee is continuing to follow in the footsteps of fellow countryman Stephan Lichtsteiner by turning in a host of impressive performances down the right flank for Vaduz, an outfit who currently lead the nation’s second division by 11 points.

    The 20-year-old, born in South Africa but raised in Switzerland, was snapped up by the Bianconeri in the wake of some noteworthy displays for FC Zurich, making his Primavera debut in the 2011/12 season.

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