His offensive juggernaut featured Miralem Pjanic in a deeper role alongside Sami Khedira, with Mario Mandzukic and Juan Cuadrado in wider roles. Paulo Dybala played behind lone striker Gonzalo Higuain, and both bagged an early goal each.
"During the week I had not even thought about it, but after a training session the next morning I thought, 'I have to change something'.
"I had said in the press conference on Saturday that it was an option, but nobody expected me to actually do it!
“I don’t have to make anyone happy. I am not much of a theorist, but every now and then I come up with a mad idea and try it on the pitch. The important thing is to be sure what you’re doing.”
The Croat, with his tireless work ethic, looked well-suited to the left wing position as he charged up and down the byline all game long.
"Mandzukic has gone back in time because he played in that role when he was much younger. He also has a never-ending engine and wasn't even tired at full-time. He did very well defending and in terms of technique.”
The formation is certainly quite popular in the continent, and he was asked if he would use it again.
"The system is certainly one option we can use. Everyone was involved and played a great game as a team.
"Even with so many attacking players, we allowed little or nothing to Lazio. We made a few mistakes and could have had many more goals."