Manager Maurizio Sarri talked about what work he did with his squad during the time off, and what they need to focus on going forward.
“We’ve been working in training on the many errors that we’ve made recently, so before trying to work out how to neutralise Cagliari, we concentrated more on how to improve ourselves.
“We’re coming off a game where we got a lot wrong mentally even before the tactical issues. The defence gets the blame when conceding a goal, but I think they’ve not been protected well by the midfield.”
Juventus’ last outing using the trio of Cristiano Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala, and Gonzalo Higuain didn’t go too well, losing 3-1 against Lazio in the Supercoppa Italiana. When asked if he would use it again, Sarri said -
“We’ll see tomorrow, there’s also Aaron Ramsey available who is now in good shape. It’s a game where we will need to pay a great deal of attention behind the ball.”
The manager also provided an update on injury issues.
“Paulo Dybala only worked separately in training yesterday because he had a slight muscular issue, but nothing serious. Douglas Costa is always an option, although we need to take time to get him back into shape after a serious injury.
“Matthijs de Ligt had shoulder and adductor problems, so it was a difficult spell for him, especially after playing so much. Merih Demiral was in good form, so we had the opportunity to rest De Ligt. I’ll decide tomorrow who starts.”
The midfield is stretched again, with Sami Khedira out after having surgery and Rodrigo Bentancur suspended for three games after getting sent off against Lazio.
“At this moment, we are trying Adrien Rabiot on the right side of midfield, while Emre Can could play central midfield or on the right. We’ve also started working on Federico Bernardeschi over the last few days.
“Rabiot seems ok physically and has been improving, but he still gives off the impression of someone who can do more.”
The Bianconeri have already been active in the winter mercato, signing winger Dejan Kulusevski from Atalanta, though he’ll see out the rest of the season on loan at Parma where he’s impressed this season.
“He is an interesting figure. Transfers are not by area, but evidently the conditions could not be met to bring him in straight away. The most important thing is that the club always gets there first for these young talents.”