Juve, Allegri and the short muzzle: the coach’s ‘lesson’

“The numbers can’t be discussed, it can be said that I’m scarce and the team sucks”

Short muzzle, second act. During the press conference, Massimiliano Allegri, Juventus coach, once again explains the ‘philosophy’ which – for fans and some of the critics – risks becoming a limit for the team in individual matches. Is winning with minimum effort and a small margin always enough? “The short face is simple, it was aimed at the championship when I said that winning by one point is enough. That stuff there was transformed into single games. I didn’t say that thing there, it was disguised and turned over,” Allegri said in the press conference in view of the match against Spezia. After the 1-1 draw against Nantes in the Europa League, Allegri lost his temper during an interview with Sky when the team’s attitude was questioned.

“I’m not nervous at all, something happened with someone booing the boys who entered the pitch for no reason. The other night it was perhaps a wrong reaction, but I can be criticized on many things: they can tell me that the team plays badly we need to do better. But there’s one thing that we shouldn’t talk about facts. I didn’t go to school very much but one subject is debatable, mathematics isn’t. There’s no arguing about that, then I accept that I’m a poor coach. my teams suck, I accept everything because it’s part of the criticism. But you can’t argue with the numbers,” he adds. “I’m sorry when I had the reaction the other night, I have no reactions if I am criticized because everyone can have his opinion. But nothing that is clear about the numbers is debatable”.

In the last match of the championship, Allegri had an unusual reaction when he replied to a fan who booed some players: “Did I expect greater understanding from the environment? No understanding, no. We don’t need understanding. We just have to try to do our best because in the league we have to make an important climb – he says -. For us it is important to score a certain number of points regardless of what happens outside. As far as Europe is concerned, I’m sorry but it is the demonstration that there are no easy games in Europe there are and we’ll have to go to Nantes trying to play a fair game that allows us to go through and we have the chances. And then we’re in the semi-final of the Italian Cup. So we’ll see there too.”

“The match against Spezia is a championship match and we must continue with our mini objectives. We must reach the teams ahead as soon as possible. Against Spezia it will be difficult, on a difficult pitch. Spezia creates a lot and the matches never end. It will take attention and a lot of technique,” he says. “We had a week of rebound after the match against Atalanta. Then we set ourselves mini goals to be able to climb the table. We have to work on the points scored so as not to lose reality. The team scored 44 points”.

The bianconeri are returning from the home draw against Nantes in the first leg of the Europa League playoffs. On return, Juve will have to win in France. “The Europa League is not compromised. Football is strange in one part of the match we could have done better and we are working to achieve more in the offensive phase. Turnover? Those who play every three days are used to it”. Formation chapter: “Chiesa won’t be available because he was very tired and it’s normal. Perin will return and play. I’ll have to evaluate what concerns the others. There will certainly be some changes. Kean, Perin and Rugani are the three who will play. Also because Bremer is disqualified and Bonucci is not yet in optimal conditions. He’s fine but he’s not ready to play from the start but he’s in the group and I’m very happy. Then I have to decide on the others”.

In Europe, Juventus have won only one match against Maccabi Haifa this year. “Does this team have a Europe problem? No, absolutely not. We need to improve our performance during matches. Especially when we have to be in charge of the matches. After the 1-0 draw against Nantes we slowed down the game and the circulation of the ball was very slow and we were no longer convinced to score the second goal, which we had to look for more insistently. Then we conceded on the only occasion our opponents came forward. But this is proof that Nantes are a team that they were very good at staying inside the game and we got out of the game a bit and they punished us at the first opportunity.”