Andrea Pirlo acknowledges Juventus are facing a “strange” season in Serie A but believes the impact of coronavirus on the schedule has restored balance across European football.
Italian champions Juve are fourth in the table after 11 matches, four points off leaders Milan, but they are not the only top side struggling to match the high standards of previous campaigns.
Liverpool, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain – all reigning champions – are being kept off the top of their respective divisions.
Indeed, each of the leaders in Europe’s top five leagues – Tottenham, Real Sociedad, Bayer Leverkusen, Milan and Lille – are playing in the Europa League in 2020-21, rather than joining Juve in the Champions League.
“It’s a strange championship but it’s like all the other European championships,” Pirlo told Juventus TV.
“With COVID and the matches close together, everything has balanced out a bit and therefore you have to face every game with the right mentality.
“There are no more ‘materasso’ teams; there are strong teams who think about playing and not just defending themselves.
“You have to face them all with a certain mentality otherwise you risk facing nasty surprises.”
Juve’s fortunes have improved in recent weeks, however, winning their past four matches in all competitions.
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