Allegri: “We will need the right type of performance to bounce back”


Coach Massimiliano Allegri previewed the Parma clash earlier today: “Giorgio Chiellini’s injury is not too serious, but it will take him 10-15 days to recover. He is likely to miss the next two games and then we will re-evaluate him.”

On the lineup: “Mario Mandzukic will return tomorrow and I have yet to decide who to field alongside him and Cristiano Ronaldo. Somebody needs a break because we have spent a lot of energies, we need fresh legs. Martin Caceres is a reliable player and will pair up with Daniele Rugani tomorrow. Miralem Pjanic is ready, we will see about the box-to-box midfielder, I might use Federico Bernardeschi there. Leonardo Spinazzola has good chances to start, Mattia Perin will be in the XI. The most important thing is to get back on track.”

On Parma: “I congratulate them because they are having a great season, coach Roberto D’Aversa gave them a good structure and they have achieved excellent results on the road. They have technical and speedy players up front, we will need the right type of performance to bounce back.”

On the loss to Atalanta: “We did not shoot a lot in Bergamo, but we did not either against Lazio. Without Mario Mandzukic, we are unable to fill the box. We had managed to replace him in different ways and win in the previous games. The Lazio and the Atalanta matches were similar, we won one and we lost one. They were affected by some episodes, like Ciro Immobile’s missed goal or us giving two away against Atalanta. We are not in a crisis, we just lost a game that did not turn out well for us. We were too sloppy and imprecise. We squeaked by in Rome.”

On the state of the team: “They practice well today, but we did before the previous game too. You can botch a game throughout a season, it happens, but can not remedy to that since it was a Coppa Italia fixture. Winning every game is very difficult, we took the criticism for losing, but so far we have collected more points than last season and we advanced in Champions League. We were eliminated because Atalanta played well.”

On Paulo Dybala: “He has played a lot of games, the most out of everybody besides Leonardo Bonucci. He featured as a false-nine with Mandzukic out, the tactics hinge on the skills of the players. It is normal that he might have more chances when he plays next two Mandzukic. He scored more last season, but we did not have Cristiano. We need to mesh the characteristics of our players, use different looks.”

On the criticism: “I have had a lot of fun at Juventus, we have won seven titles in a row and played in two of the last four Champions League finals and put up a fight against Bayern Munich and Real Madrid in earlier rounds. This does not mean that we do not play to win that trophy, but we I first joined we were worried about beating Malmoe, while I believed we had a chance to bring home the cup with that roster. We lost track of reality in some things. There are 7/8 teams in Europe that have the quality to reach the semi-finals, but only four manage and only two play in the final. The others get eliminated. I hear that Juventus are going to be there, but that is not a foregone conclusion even if we have Ronaldo.”

“We just have to focus on playing well, winning Serie A and competing in Europe, like in the previous seasons. Champions League is bigger now, there are more contenders. You have to be good and lucky. It not like playing videogames, there are several variables. We lost in Bergamo, we are sorry and we apologize, now we have to try to do the best we can. I wish we were not beaten there. It is also a matter of numbers. Real Madrid won four Champions League, but one Liga in six years. We hope to be successful, but it not like I can guarantee it, it is not normal to think like that. Everything is moot in football, but there are also numbers and stats. There has to be some respect for our work, our opponents have to be taken into account too: winning is something amazing and not the normalcy.”

“I think the squad understood that. If we got bounced by Atletico Madrid, which played in as many finals as we did recently, we will be criticized. Playing well is simple, but you have to combine that with winning and you need balance, those two things do not necessarily go together. We need to keep working. We won one trophy, we need to win more, but there are also other teams vying for it.”

On Joao Cancelo: “I talked to him, he has the skills to become the best in his role. He improved his defensive phase, but he can get better in distributing the ball, because not every part of the pitch is the same. In Jeddah he made the same mistakes, but Milan did not score. He must stay serene, like Mattia De Sciglio, who did well as centre-back, but an unlucky bounce turned it into a bad performance. You judge it only based on the result, but not all mistakes lead to the same thing.”

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