Schalke have moved to strengthen their attacking options for the second half of the Bundesliga campaign by recruiting Marko Pjaca on loan from Juventus until the end of the season.

The 22-year-old attacker, who has made 19 competitive appearances for the Italian giants after signing on in summer 2016, spent most of 2017 on the sidelines after suffering a cruciate ligament injury last March. However, now that he has recovered he is eager to regain form and fitness with a view to earning a place in Croatia's squad at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

"I spoke about Schalke a great deal with [former Schalke captain and current Juventus defender] Benedikt Höwedes," said Pjaca. "He told me a lot of positive things about the club and the fans. The coach also informed me about his playing philosophy. I liked it and now I hope to play as much as possible."

"We're happy that Marko's decided to join us," said head coach Domenico Tedesco. "A lot of clubs were interested in him. He'll strengthen the quality in our team. He can play in a number of positions: on the right or the left, as well as in attacking midfield or up front. He's robust and is quick."

Pjaca has already linked up with the Royal Blues at their training camp in Benidorm and becomes the club's second signing of the winter transfer window following the arrival of Cedric Teuchert from Nuremberg.

Domenico Tedesco's side kick off the second half of the season with a trip to fellow top-four hopefuls RB Leipzig.

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