Andrea Pirlo played with NYCFC from 2015-17. (FrontRowSoccer.com Photo)

Former New York City FC midfielder and Italian national team standout Andrea Pirlo is about to take over the Juventus Under-23 team, according to several reports out of Italy and Europe.

Pirlo, 41, a member of Italy’s 2006 World Cup championship team, has secured his coaching badges. He has been linked with a return to Turin for a while. He played for Juventus form 2011-15 before he ventured across the Atlantic Ocean to play for NYCFC (from 2015-17).

Sky Sport Italia’s Gianluca Di Marzio and Fabrizio Romano confirmed that the appointment of Pirlo was complete. Napoli Primavera coach Roberto Baronio will be his assistant coach.

Pirlo will succeed Fabio Pecchia, who recently guided the U-23 squad to the Coppa Italia Serie C but just fell short of getting the team promoted to Serie B.

According to the reports, Juventus president Andrea Agnelli hopes Pirlo will eventually graduate from the U23 to the senior squad, following in the footsteps of Pep Guardiola and Zinedine Zidane at Barcelona and Real Madrid, respectively.