Juventus take on Bologna in a midweek game tomorrow, but with a big game against second-placed Napoli looming this weekend, manager Massimiliano Allegri wants to make sure the Bianconeri go into that game in the right frame of mind.
“Juve have to get used to winning continuously. There are matches like Frosinone, others are more open and tomorrow maybe we’ll score early and it’ll be a totally different game.
“The more the Frosinone game went on the deeper they dropped, and the more chances we had. The team played a good game, especially in the second half where we were more lucid and worked the ball into the box more, where the opponent can’t commit fouls and you have the advantage.
“Tomorrow we have to win, because we need to get to the head-to-head game [with Napoli] with at least three points’ advantage.
“We’re facing a Bologna team that beat Roma clearly, and in the games they’ve lost it’s always been 1-0. They got one 0-0 and in the game against Inter they may have lost 3-0, but they conceded goals in the final minutes.
“They know how to suffer and stay in the game, and [Filippo] Inzaghi is really good in that sense, but we have to win.
“The mental aspect is important, we can’t take this lightly. We need to play like in Frosinone, where the team played in a mature and responsible manner.
“There are times when you’ll score more in the second half and times where you unlock the game immediately. Seasons are like that, and it all balances out.
“The team has been improving physically in the second half and that’s important for our season, because obviously when the other team is starting to tire you’ll have more chance of scoring.”
Allegri was asked what he thought of Lionel Messi voting for him as Coach of the Year in the FIFA World Football Awards
“I didn’t know that, I’m finding out about it now. I’m happy. Didier Deschamps rightly won the prize yesterday, because he won the World Cup.
“I’d also like to compliment Beppe Marotta, because he was given the prize for the best general manager in Europe.
“It was a beautiful day and we’re sorry we couldn’t attend, but we have these matches so close together.”
The manager provided a squad update, starting with Cristiano Ronaldo and Paulo Dybala, who will both play tomorrow.
“(Ronaldo) won’t be there against Young Boys next Tuesday. We’re at the start of the season, he’s fine physically and he needs to keep playing and scoring, so he’ll play tomorrow.
“Dybala will play. The day before yesterday he had a good game, he gets judged on his goals alone but he was good against Frosinone. He needs to play.
“Mattia Perin will play tomorrow, Giorgio Chiellini will rest and the doubt is Alex Sandro. If he doesn’t play then it’ll be Juan Cuadrado on the right and Joao Cancelo on the left, unless I play Federico Bernardeschi on the left.
”Andrea Barzagli has completely recovered and could play from the start. Old horses don’t need to train, when they need to run you just put them on the turf and they run! If Barzagli plays we could play with a back-three, if he doesn’t it could be four. I have to evaluate the conditions of Cuadrado, Alex Sandro and Cancelo, and I need to keep some changes from the bench in reserve or I’ll have no changes to make.”
Allegri was also asked about a couple of youngsters like Leonardo Spinazzola and Moise Kean.
“Spinazzola is good, and we can slowly reintegrate him with the squad. As for Kean, I had him in mind for Frosinone on Sunday, in fact he was about to come on when we scored and I changed it. Tomorrow is a possibility for him.
“I could play Dybala and Ronaldo together, or I could put someone else up there too and in that case it’d be Kean, because he’s a player worthy of Juventus in every respect.”
Rodrigo Bentancur is another youngster who has been getting playing time.
“Tomorrow he has a good chance of playing, then we’ll see about the others. Blaise Matuidi will be back, so I’ll have to choose one of Emre Can or Matuidi.
“He [Bentancur] had a good match in tight spaces the other night, but he has to be more decisive when he shoots or when he gets forward.
“He has important qualities, but he needs to have more belief in what he can do. He needs to be getting some goals and some assists, and he can only do that if he relaxes and plays more freely.”
Regarding the speculation that he would use Federico Bernardeschi in the mezzala role -
“The other day he was playing as a mezzala, because we needed a player like that in that part of the pitch.
“In Valencia he was useful on the wing in the defensive and attacking phase. He’s improved a lot and the credit all goes to him because as soon as he arrived he knew that to be in a great team meant improving in every regard.”