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Juventus on track for pre-season goals – Massimiliano Allegri

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 22 Apr 2024

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Juventus head coach Massimiliano Allegri says he is on course to achieve both his pre-season objectives with the Turin giants.

The Bianconeri currently sit third in Serie A and take a 2-0 lead into Tuesday night’s return leg of the Coppa Italia semi-final in Rome against Lazio.

Allegri told a press conference: “This year we started with two goals: to qualify for next year’s Champions League – we are currently third in the standings – and to win the Coppa Italia.

“I always say that when you play, the goal must be to go all the way in the competitions, always.

“Our focus now must be to go all the way in the Coppa Italia and that must be our goal. The team will be motivated and I’m sure none of us are thinking about the two-goal lead in the first leg.

“When you are at Juventus you have to play to get results, to win. The ambition must always be to reach our maximum.

“When you play in a great team it’s important to live with the desire and, consequently, the pressure to try to win trophies.”

Allegri is in his second spell as Juve boss after replacing the sacked Andrea Pirlo in 2021.

In his first stint in charge, from 2014-19, he guided Juve to five successive league titles, four Coppa Italias and to the Champions League final twice.

Second-half goals from Federico Chiesa and Dusan Vlahovic in the first leg at the Allianz Arena earlier this month put Juve in control of the tie.

But Allegri is not underestimating Lazio, who appointed Croatian Igor Tudor as head coach in March after Maurizio Sarri resigned.

“We will find a Lazio side that will play a very aggressive game, having to come back from two goals down,” Allegri added.

“They are changing compared to the team coached by Sarri, they are much more aggressive. It will be a difficult match.

Allegri said he will monitor Chiesa, who played the full 90 minutes in Friday’s 2-2 draw at Cagliari.

Lazio boss Tudor believes his side must play the “perfect match” if they are to overturn a two-goal deficit.

He said: “It’s an important match because we are playing to get into the final, against a strong team and with a (first-leg) result that isn’t easy.

“We must try until the end with all our strength to pass, we must believe and play a perfect match. Don’t make any mistakes and go with all our strength, this is our objective and let’s see what happens.”

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