Juventus have to learn 'to play ugly' – Allegri

By Sports Desk December 11, 2021

Massimiliano Allegri has urged Juventus to "play ugly" after his side dropped two points in Saturday's 1-1 Serie A draw with Venezia.

Juve had won three successive matches in all competitions without conceding ahead their trip to Stadio Pier Luigi Penzo, where they opened the scoring through Alvaro Morata.

However, the Bianconeri wasted a good chance to double their lead through Juan Cuadrado before half-time and were made to pay 10 minutes into the second period.

Former Torino man Mattia Aramu guided a first-time shot past Wojciech Szczesny from range and Juve, who lost Paulo Dybala to an early injury, failed to muster a response.

The visitors finished with an expected goals (xG) return of 2.13 compared to Venezia's 0.54, but Juve were made to pay for a lack of cutting edge in front of goal.

Juve are now six points adrift of fourth-placed Atalanta, who face Hellas Verona on Sunday, and Allegri admitted his side need to improve in certain areas after their latest setback.

"It was a good first half, but then we had a 10- or 15-minute blackout before the Venezia goal," he told DAZN. 

"The same thing happened against Salernitana recently – we were lucky then not to concede as they hit the post – so it's something we clearly need to work on.

"We were under pressure, couldn't play the ball to feet anymore, so we should've had patience with one or two balls over the top to the strikers, but we didn't do that.

"We had to attack the space, force them into fouls and more yellow cards, but we threw away two points against a good Venezia side.

"At the start of the second half we were wandering about, giving the ball straight back. Sometimes we don't realise the game is getting 'ugly' and we don't read the moment. 

"Once that moment passed, we started playing again and pinned Venezia back into their own half, but the damage was done."

 

Allegri added: "We have players without a great deal of experience. The whole team was a bit sluggish after the restart.

"We can't seem to realise when it's the time to play pretty and those 10, 15 minutes we ought to play ugly, grit our teeth and push through."

Dybala hobbled off against Malmo in the Champions League on Wednesday and lasted just 12 minutes before being replaced against Venezia.

"We ran a risk, and it went badly," Allegri said. "He went off on Wednesday with a muscular issue; we hoped he was better now, but that was not the case."

Juventus, who had won 15 of their previous 17 league meetings with Venezia, could find themselves nine points off the Champions League places come the end of the weekend.

"We mustn't think about that," the coach said. "We threw away two points today, two points we should've brought home."

Related items

  • Kostic expresses gratitude to Eintracht ahead of Juventus move Kostic expresses gratitude to Eintracht ahead of Juventus move

    Filip Kostic has expressed his gratitude to Eintracht Frankfurt ahead of his move to Juventus.

    The Serbia winger is on the verge of completing his switch to Juve, ending a four-year spell with Eintracht.

    Kostic helped the Bundesliga club win the Europa League last season and has played more games (167) and started more matches (161) than any other player for the club since his arrival from Hamburg.

    The 29-year-old says Eintracht will always have a special place in his heart.

    "THANK YOU Eintracht Frankfurt for believing in me when no one else did!" he posted on Instagram.

    "I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to the club, all the wonderful people who work at the club, the team-mates, the coaches, the management, the fans and the whole city for making my stay at the club and in the city unforgettable.

    "Eintracht fans, thank you for supporting us every game. We bled together for the colours of the club, you in the stands and us on the field.

    "Together we managed to write club history by winning the Europa League. Thank you for all the love and support you have given me.

    "We wouldn't have made it without you. I will carry you in my heart forever."

     

  • PSG striker Kalimuendo joins Rennes for €25m after being linked with Leeds United transfer PSG striker Kalimuendo joins Rennes for €25m after being linked with Leeds United transfer

    Paris Saint-Germain striker Arnaud Kalimuendo has joined Rennes in a reported €25million transfer, penning a five-year deal with the Ligue 1 side.

    Kalimuendo, a France Under-21 international who signed his first professional contract with PSG as a 17-year-old in 2019, had been strongly linked with Premier League side Leeds United after they missed out on Belgian forward Charles De Ketelaere to Milan.

    The pacey forward has spent each of the last two seasons on loan at Lens, scoring 12 league goals in the 2021-22 campaign as they recorded an impressive seventh-placed finish.

    Only nine players, including PSG stars Kylian Mbappe (28) and Neymar (13), outscored Kalimuendo last term, earning the 20-year-old a big-money move to Europa League qualifiers Rennes.

    PSG boss Christophe Galtier had confirmed Kalimuendo's move was imminent earlier on Thursday, while Mauro Icardi is also expected to leave the Parc des Princes to make room for another attacking recruit.

    Rennes lost their Ligue 1 opener to Lorient last Sunday and face a trip to Monaco in their second game of the campaign on Saturday.

  • FIFA confirms change to World Cup start date as Qatar's fixture with Ecuador is brought forward FIFA confirms change to World Cup start date as Qatar's fixture with Ecuador is brought forward

    FIFA has confirmed the 2022 World Cup will start a day earlier than originally planned in order to allow hosts Qatar to face Ecuador in the opening match of the tournament.

    Qatar had originally been set to open their first World Cup campaign on Monday November 21, with Group A rivals Senegal and the Netherlands scheduled to get the competition under way earlier that day.

    But a unanimous decision taken by the Bureau of the FIFA Council means Felix Sanchez's Qatar side will now begin the tournament on Sunday November 20 at 7pm local time – continuing the tradition of the home side playing first.

    The opening ceremony has also been brought forward a day to November 20.

    "The FIFA World Cup 2022 will kick off with an even greater celebration for local and international fans as host country Qatar will now play Ecuador on Sunday, 20 November as part of a stand-alone event," read a statement issued by FIFA.

    "The change ensures the continuity of a long-standing tradition of marking the start of the FIFA World Cup with an opening ceremony on the occasion of the first match featuring either the hosts or the defending champions. 

    "The decision followed an assessment of the competition and operational implications, as well as a thorough consultation process and an agreement with key stakeholders and the host country."

     

    The decision means the Netherlands' fixture against Senegal has been moved to a later time slot on November 21, and will now follow on from England's Group B opener versus Iran.

    The World Cup hosts have featured in the opening match of the tournament since the 2006 edition in Germany, where Jurgen Klinsmann's team beat Costa Rica 4-2.

    Between the 1974 and 2002 tournaments, the defending champions opened the tournament, with France infamously going down to Senegal in the last World Cup to follow that tradition.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.