Juventus take on Napoli tomorrow in an early test just two weeks into the season. The Bianconeri won 1-0 away at Parma last weekend while Napoli defeated Fiorentina in a seven-goal thriller.
Manager Maurizio Sarri was reportedly going to miss this game as well, according to club vice-president Pavel Nedved who spoke to the media yesterday, but assistant coach Giovanni Martusciello thinks otherwise.
“Sarri has to complete some tests in the afternoon, so we’ll see if he can be there tomorrow. He could even sit in the dugout. I hope he does. If by some force majeure he can’t make it, we’ll act accordingly.”
On how he plans to approach the game against the Neapolitans, Sarri’s former side?
“This is a club who want to win. In front of them there’s the word victory, something that’s pursued even with those who don’t play for a couple of games.
“The objective is to win 40-50 matches, so there’s a need for everyone to be pulling in the same direction.”
The transfer window closes in a couple of days, what were his thoughts on Paulo Dybala and the other players linked with moves away?
“It’s a pain in the neck. There are so many players being talked about, so some of them are not completely focused.
“We’ll see in our last training session who will start or be named on the bench. I’ve seen a very good Dybala.
“He’s an extraordinary lad and a good player, who can play in different roles. He could’ve been unsettled by the market last week, but he’s got his head down (and focused).
“However, we play with 11 on the pitch. We have 27 players and all of them are on same level, excluding Cristiano Ronaldo. We must make specific choices against Napoli.
“Dybala’s motivated, he likes this way of playing. I had a calm and peaceful chat with him. I’m happy to have met him.”
Doesn’t look like Gonzalo Higuain will be leaving Juve this summer especially since the club store now has the #21 jersey with his name on it available for fans to purchase.
“He’s made an excellent impression on me. He tries to move away from the defensive line to finish off moves. He’s a very important player and a real champion.”
On his personal feelings about playing against Napoli?
“Facing Napoli is very nice for me. It was unimaginable one or two months ago. I’m from Ischia in Campania, so I have affection for Napoli.
“It’s a very special game for me, but the first whistle will, as always, take away the emotion.”