Juventus won a tough game 1-0 away at Olympique Lyonnaise despite playing most of the second half down a man after Mario Lemina was sent off for his second bookable offence.
After the game, Massimiliano Allegri addressed the press, joking that the ref knew his side needed a shot in the backside and therefore reduced Juve down to ten men.
“We weren’t moving the ball around properly and so the referee decided to give us a kick and force us into it by reducing us to 10 men.
“Unfortunately, this is one of our limitations.”
The manager was asked about his surprise choice, starting Patrice Evra on the left side of a three-man defence while Medhi Benatia sat on the bench.
“I chose Evra because Benatia was not supposed to play on Saturday and did after 40 days out. I didn’t want to risk him suffering a relapse. Evra can do well there, he’s a natural left-footer and is useful for us.
“I used Cuadrado on the left on Saturday and he did pretty well. If I’d have started Cuadrado today, I wouldn’t have had some fresh legs to bring on, so substitutes are always important.
“We suffered a lot in the first half on the counter, Lacazette and (Nabil) Fekir were good at stretching our defence, while we lost the ball too many times with short passes. It went better after the break, even down to 10 men.”
On club captain Gianluigi Buffon keeping the sides even by saving a penalty.
“Fortunately Buffon saved us at that moment. We must try to play better, be relaxed and not too hasty in our passing, as when Lyon sit back like that, you need patience. The same thing happened against Udinese, as we ran some risks there too.
“We do have to play better in so many areas, including running off the ball. If we don’t run as much as Milan this weekend, we’re going to be in trouble.”