clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Antonio Conte reportedly thinking of starting Paul Pogba against Bayern Munich

See, things are actually happening over the international break.

Valerio Pennicino

You're probably wondering what Juventus might do to give Bayern Munich a different look when the Bianconeri travel to Germany in just a matter of 10 days, right? I understand. It's hard not to with so much on the line in the first leg of the heavyweight matchup.

But don't you worry. According to the Gazzetta dello Sport, Antonio Conte has, too. You really though Il Mister would take some time off during the international break? Nah, not this guy.

Who knows, it could be total Italian rag nonsense. But I can't say I'm not intrigued. Actually, more than just slightly intrigued. I'm a lotta intrigued. All you think about when it comes to Paul Pogba is awesome things. Hey, don't blame me. Point the finger at him and at him only. This is all on the recently-turned 20-year-old Frenchman and all the fantastic things he has done this season.

But with the way that Pogba has played in recent matches — and for pretty much the season as a whole — it makes absolute sense why Conte would be seriously thinking about trying to find space in the starting lineup for the young midfielder. Conte's done this kind of thing before. Remember him going from the much-hoopla'd 4-2-4 to the 4-3-3 switch to get M-V-P all playing at once? Or Conte switching to the current 3-5-2 to get all three of Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci, and Andrea Barzagli in the lineup at the same time?

This kind of thing isn't a foreign concept to Conte — a manager who has always shown the cojones to change his tactics — at all.

/visions of POG-BOOM shots racing through our minds/

Sure, getting a start against Bayern in the Champions League is certainly a different animal than one against Celtic at Juventus Stadium with things just about wrapped up from the opening kickoff onwards. But what has Pogba shown so far to say he can't handle the pressure? He's a true difference maker in the midfield. And if M-V-P is top of the line, what would adding Pogba do to things?

I understand the fact that it would change tactics and put Claudio Marchisio in a position he hasn't played much of in a Juventus jersey at the senior level. Or that a lot of attacking responsibility — even more than usual — would be put on Mirko Vucinic's shoulders. But I can't take my mind off of the difference Pogba could make against such a strong midfield like Bayern's and in an away tie where it's so damn crucial to come back to Turin with the lead or the chance to regain it.

I guess we'll just have to wait a week and change for the final answer. But consider me in this line.