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Allegri warns Juventus about Parma challenge

Manager’s comments ahead of Serie A clash at the Tardini

Chievo Verona v Juventus - Serie A Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images

The Serie A is better for having some historic clubs back in it, and just three years after facing bankruptcy, Parma are back in the big league. Juventus travel to Parma knowing the hosts will be well up for this encounter.

Manager Massimiliano Allegi warned about the challenge ahead.

“Juventus have always historically struggled in Parma. I believe that in the last 24 matches there they have won seven times Parma, there have been 10 draws and seven wins for Juve. We have scored 26 goals at Parma whilst they have netted 24 times against us.

“It won’t be a walk in the park because titles pass through games like these. Parma will be up for it tomorrow night, they are a newly promoted side and we can’t go there with the wrong mentality, we must show them respect.

“The first mini-cycle is coming to an end, but I want to have a peaceful international break and to do that, I want the three points.

”The league will be tougher this year as a lot of the mid-top level teams have improved, and then the teams at the very top like Inter and Napoli are stronger, plus there is Roma who are as strong as they were as last year. Therefore it will be a tougher campaign in my opinion.”

Allegri also spoke about the Champions League draw that saw the Bianconeri placed in Group H.

“Although the Parma game is imminent and the most important thing in mind right now, the Champions League draw has given us a group with two excellent teams in Manchester and Valencia, and then there are Young Boys who outsiders. However, we’ll think about it after our Serie A game against Sassuolo.”

On his team selections for tomorrow’s game -

“Dybala has been working hard to improve his physical condition and like the rest of the team, we expect to see everyone back in even better shape after the international break, with tomorrow being the end of a mini-cycle.

”All of the players are fine and De Sciglio has also returned to the fray. Now just we need to improve their physical condition and the understanding between them, because we are only at the beginning of the season and tomorrow we have an important game to win.

”I have a doubt for who will play on the right of the defence between Cuadrado or Cancelo, but the rest of the back four I have settled upon. Ronaldo plays tomorrow, as does Mandzukic but I still need to decide who will partner them in attack.

”I don’t know if we’ll go with two or three in midfield, and one of Emre Can or Khedira will play there. Can is doing well and it’s a new league for him to get used to. He’s not been here for long and is still getting a feel for things, slowly he’ll get to know Italian football better. You can’t criticise a player like Sami Khedira. He’s one of few players who has always been trusted and fielded by every manager he’s ever had. He’s a world champion and a winner, the facts speak for themselves.”

How did he feel about Cristiano Ronaldo choosing to miss the UEFA gala -

“It was a personal decision, which must be respected, but it shows how he always wants to work in order to remain the best player in the world.

”The arrival of Cristiano has been stimulating for everyone, there is a great level of competitiveness within the team and everyone wants to play. Ronaldo is fine, he is training well and it’s normal for him that yesterday he may have been disappointed after scoring 15 goals in the Champions League and going on to win it along with Modric and the other players. However, this shows you his work ethic and how he continues to strive to be the best and for us this is an advantage.”

Allegri took a dig at his detractors who claim Juve win ugly -

“I’ve always been inspired by those who win, such as Fabio Capello and Marcello Lippi. Ultimately it doesn’t say on their honours lists, ‘they played well but finished second.’

“Once I retire, some of the greats will tell me what it means to play well…”