Thursday, September 21, 2017

Allegri waiting to draw conclusions on Juve progress

SoccerNews in Serie A 8 Sep 2017

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Massimiliano Allegri says he will not know if his Juventus side have improved from last season until the end of the campaign.

Juve won Serie A and the Coppa Italia as well as reaching the Champions League final in 2016-17, but an eventful transfer window saw star defenders Leonardo Bonucci and Dani Alves depart while Benedikt Howedes, Blaise Matuidi, Douglas Costa and Federico Bernardeschi all moved to Turin.

While Allegri’s men have kicked off the new league season with two wins from two, the Bianconeri coach is waiting before drawing conclusions on how his squad has progressed.

“The theory does not matter – [what happens] in practice is what counts,” he told a pre-match news conference ahead of facing Chievo.

“[We will know] if, at the end of the season, the team has had a good season, arriving in March still in the fight for all three competitions.”

With Giorgio Chiellini out injured, Allegri is looking at handing a debut to Howedes as he ponders the best way to tackle Rolando Maran’s Chievo.

“Howedes is fit and he is adapting to the new working methods – I will have to evaluate him [on Friday],” he added. 

“Chievo are a well organised team that has been an important club in Serie A for many years. They are led by an excellent coach.

“We have to get the three points. It’s an important test for us.”

And Allegri also gave his backing to any plans for European clubs to fall in line with the Premier League and close the transfer window before the start of the season.

“I hope they do it,” he said. “It would be good news for everyone.”

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