Juventus travel to London this week as Champions League group stage action resumes, with a game at Chelsea that could go a long way towards determining who wins Group H and who ends up in second place. The Bianconeri had won narrowly in Turin, and a win tomorrow will secure top spot, while a Chelsea win will throw the group wide open again.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference, coach Massimiliano Allegri spoke about how their opponents would line up differently without Romelu Lukaku.
“Tomorrow, we play for first place against the Premier League leaders and the Champions League winners.
“Without Lukaku, they have different characteristics. They’ll have fewer reference points and do more counterattacks. Lukaku is a reference point. They gain speed without him and defend differently.”
Juve’s injury woes continued with Danilo hobbling off over the weekend, and the Brazilian will be out for some time.
“We have four [fit] defenders, including Alex Sandro. In midfield, everyone is available except Bernardeschi.
“Danilo will be out for two months and Kulusevski went to the dentist. That’s why he didn’t train today. He will be available tomorrow.”
Paulo Dybala did not start in the win at Lazio, but is fully fit after a minor calf problem.
“I don’t know how long he can play, but he trained with the team and he is available.”
Juve finally got more than a goal in a game this last weekend after almost a two-month spell.
“Moise Kean or Alvaro Morata will start, maybe they will play 45 minutes each. Morata played well against Lazio, same as Kean when he was introduced.
“We need to improve the finishing, we create important chances, but we often have the last pass wrong. We need serenity and do not rush to score goals.
“We netted two against Lazio on Saturday, but we could have scored more. The are the preconditions for creating actions, that’s where we need to improve.”
It wouldn’t be a Juventus press conference without a mention of Cristiano Ronaldo, and Allegri was asked if he felt Juve were missing the forward’s finishing.
“That’s the past, Ronaldo has been a centralizer everywhere he’s gone. We have many players who can score goals, we haven’t fulfilled our potential yet.”