Little Bryan’s tale, Audero talks Juventus past and future, social media followers

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A heartwarming story involving Juventus made the rounds in the weekend as Paul Pogba on Twitter celebrated the return on the pitch of Bryan Jocelyn Dodien, who plays in the U-15 team and has been battling cancer since 2015: “What a blessing it is that Bryan beat cancer and now played his first game with Juve U15. So proud of you my friend, merci for being an inspiration to me and so many others. Hope to see you soon!”

Bryan has been playing for Juventus since he was a little kid, but he got sick three years ago and obviously had to stop to take on a much more important fight. In 2015, the midfielder dedicated to him a goal in Coppa Italia. Fortunately Bryan was successful, resumed practicing in Autumn and completed his comeback on Sunday, appearing in a friendly against Bologna. Bryan is also very close with Moise Kean, who is a little older but was also born in Piedmont from Ivorian parents. They both joined Juventus in 2012/2013.

Sampdoria goalkeeper Emil Audero talked about his time in black-and-white and his future to Gazzetta dello Sport yesterday: “I am pretty even-tempered, I tackle things serenely, but when I need to be focused on my job, I am always ready. On that regard, the three years in Juventus youth system helped me maximize my skills and my effort, even if I look relaxed. I prefer more simple and efficient saves to more stylistically-pleasing ones.”

“I was 16 when I started practicing from time to time with the first team. Gianluigi Buffon was my idol and I built a relationship with him when we began training together, which got stronger when I joined the squad regularly. You learn a lot from somebody like him even by just observing how he moves on the pitch.”

“I am trying to build my future through my present. I am not particularly concerned with it: if I do well and the results are positives, there are multiple scenarios on the table. Staying or moving does not hinge only on me, I am only partly responsible to what will happen to me.” He is currently on loan to Sampdoria, which have a €10M option to buy him at the end of the season, but the Old Lady can bring him back for €15M.

“At Juventus, everybody works harder because they know they have to give something more. Winning becomes an obsession, tying seems like losing. You need to have that mentality, otherwise you can not stay there, it is almost like an army. However, they also take care of the person behind the footballer. And now they got Cristiano Ronaldo… I admire them, they turn you into a man. They are among the favorites for Champions League thanks to the current roster, but there are several factors in play. At times I can not believe that I part of the group that made it to Cardiff…”

At the beginning of 2019, the company Result Sports put together a chart combining the total number of followers each teams has one the various social medial (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube and Weibo), ranking the overall online communities. Real Madrid and Barcelona are neck-and-neck atop of the standings and beat Manchester United by 100M users. Juventus fares decently with a rapidly growing fan base that is now close to 70M. They are fourth on Instagram (20M) and Youtube (1.7M), while they are eight on both Facebook and Twitter and out of the top 10 on Weibo.

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The Bianconeri registered record numbers during the holidays at the Museum at the Stadium, which was visited by 14k people from December 22nd to January 6th, with a 26% growth from last year and a 67% one from 2016.

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