Thursday, October 19, 2017

Allegri: Higuain not suffering from Brazil hangover

SoccerNews in Serie A 18 Nov 2016

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Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri insists Gonzalo Higuain is not suffering as a result of Argentina’s World Cup qualifying defeat to Brazil.

Edgardo Bauza’s side suffered a damaging 3-0 loss in Belo Horizonte on November 10 that has left them eight points behind Brazil in the South American qualifying section.

Higuain was dropped from the starting line-up for the subsequent 3-0 victory over Colombia, with his replacement Lucas Pratto scoring Argentina’s second.

Allegri, however, says his €90million signing is in good spirits and is ready to play in the champions’ Serie A clash with Pescara on Saturday.

“He’ll play tomorrow. I don’t see why he shouldn’t – he recovered yesterday,” Allegri told Friday’s media conference.

“As for his mood, he’s fine. There are times when things go well and other times when it’s less so, but he came back smiling.

“Argentina won and they’re still in the running for qualification, so why shouldn’t he be happy?”

Juve take on Pescara, who have just one win from their opening 12 league games, before a crucial Champions League encounter with Sevilla on Tuesday.

Allegri has concerns over the fitness of Giorgio Chiellini and Dani Alves ahead of the match, but he hopes to have Claudio Marchisio available, as he continues to battle back to full fitness following knee surgery.

“The match won’t be easy. Pescara are in some difficulty in the table but played well and created a lot. They often haven’t deserved to lose,” Allegri said.

“I have to assess Marchisio, but he’s in good shape. The ones who will take to the field will be the ones I believe are ideal for the game.

“Dani Alves will get the next couple of days to rest and recharge. He will be available next week. [Paulo] Dybala’s recovery is going as planned. We need to monitor Chiellini.”

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