A week after throwing away a two-goal lead to draw a game that had already been won, Juventus plumbed a newer low after being beaten at home by the defending Serie B champions Empoli. The newly-promoted side gave as good as they got and were not overawed by the setting, something that used to happen to regional teams in the past when they played at Juve.
Speaking after the game, coach Massimiliano Allegri was disappointed but called for patience.
“The lads had started strong, they conceded at the first mistake playing out, then got too hasty. We must have the patience to take it calmly, play as a team and not try to resolve things as individuals.
“We need to work on our solidity, but these two slip-ups will inevitably do us good. This is a strong squad, it has values and gradually they will emerge.
“Empoli leave a lot of spaces on the wings, but the things we really did badly were technical errors, because we were frenetic. We can’t assume we will take the lead and control every game, we need the calm that a great team has, knowing we can overturn it.”
Allegri was asked if there was a lack of leadership and character in the dressing room.
“A difficult moment helps you to grow, we must try to keep things simple, be united and there were too many players who made mistakes they don’t usually make because they were frenetic.
“We realised what we shouldn’t do in Udine and learned another valuable lesson this evening. Obviously, we dropped five points, but have to learn from these lessons and use them going forward.
“We’ve got to slowly find our balance. These players are if anything too generous, they were distraught because they had started well and wanted to win, but we have to learn from these mistakes.
“It takes time, we can’t go from 0-10 in one second. The main thing is we can’t be frenetic, we need to be patient when attacking and defending, because our haste to get the ball back can create spaces.”
Injuries to midfielders Arthur and Aaron Ramsey meant Allegri continued to experiment in the middle with Danilo as a defensive midfielder and Weston McKennie charged with playing trequartista.
“There are some positive elements, as Danilo did well in front of the defence and was one of the few to keep calm right to the end. Manuel Locatelli will be in better shape after the break for international duty.”
As expected, Allegri was asked what the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo meant for the team.
“Cristiano spent three years at Juventus, he scored goals, which he is very good at, he’s an extraordinary player, but we cannot think about Ronaldo from now on. I have a fine squad, we simply must realise that we can’t just dominate every match. We need to come together and this will help us for the future.
“I am optimistic, always.”