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Allegri: There’s no desire to improve Italian football

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Manager’s comments after Juve’s tough away draw at Atalanta

Juventus v AS Roma - Serie A Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images

In a rough-and-tumble game that at times highlighted the best and the worst of Juventus’ 2018-19 season, the Bianconeri struggled away against a passionate Atalanta side. With Rodrigo Bentancur sent off for the visitors, Juve had to dig deep to overcome a second half comeback deficit and draw 2-2.

Speaking after the game Massimiliano Allegri made it very clear that he was quite irritated at a number of things.

“My patience has run out, but it’s better to talk about the game - I’m not in a good mood.

“The team played a good first half, they scored a goal with the one chance they had. We knew this match was difficult, and we could even have doubled our lead at 1-0.

“In the second half we were a man down but we recovered and could even have won, so in the end it’s a good point against a great side.

“We wanted to win this game, now we have the clash with Sampdoria.”

Referee on the day Luca Banti sent off Bentancur in the second half for a second booking, and Allegri was asked if the pressure from the Atalanta players forced his decision.

“I don’t talk about referees, Banti officiated well and these things happen. Outside we hear heavy statements from club owners about referees - speaking and moralising and then doing that.

“We work and we want to win, and we’ll have to work hard to win the league. I’m disappointed, maybe I’m not used to playing at Christmas.

“I’ll leave Banti, who refereed well, aside because it’s not elegant to make these allusions and declarations. I’ll never speak, we need to educate the fans.”

This is when Allegri went into full-rant mode, indirectly referring to Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis’ vehement protests about the appointment of referee Paolo Mazzoleni for their big clash against Inter Milan tonight.

“I could make a scene but that would be wrong, in Italy anything and everything goes and we never learn. On Saturday we won a game and didn’t say anything, in a game which remained balanced for what reason? You tell me…

“Because we won on Saturday we don’t let things get out of hand. But my patience is running out, in Italy we can’t improve with the example set by certain people.

“Today I apologised to the fourth official and I’m disappointed in myself. But then you hear certain things, crying over incidents…

“I’m sorry for Italian football, there’s no desire to improve Italian football. There was a beautiful setting today, but we always need to talk about other things.

“In my opinion there’s no desire to improve, I’m disappointed for the children and my children. We don’t want to improve this sport.”