The Old Woman lost her mind. After two complicated years marked by disappointing results, early elimination from the Champions League and two fourth places in Serie A, Juventus wants to get off to a good start in this 2022-23 season. For this, Massimiliano Allegri relies on the transfer window to strengthen a team orphaned by Paulo Dybala, Matthijs de Ligt or Giorgio Chiellini. So his management tried to satisfy him by recruiting Angel Di Maria, Paul Pogba or even Gleison Bremer. But the Italian technician cannot rely on all his troops, some elements are on the side.
Juve are in trouble
That didn’t help Juve get off to a good start. In fact, after eight games played in all competitions, the Turinese have a disastrous record of 2 wins, 4 draws and 2 losses. Claimed to be unbeaten in Serie A (2 wins and 4 draws), the Italian team (8th, 10 points) is disappointing. In the Champions League, it was even worse because they lost twice (the last time they tied with Maccabi Haifa, 0 points). The first time was against Paris Saint-Germain (2-1). The second, against Benfica (2-1) yesterday. However, everything started well with the opening of Arkadiusz Milik (4th).
Then, not so much. The Old Lady fell in her ways and finally bowed to the house. A defeat that never went to the side of the supporters present at the Juventus Stadium. The latter also hissed at the players. What Captain Leonardo Bonucci fully understood, was asked by Gazzetta dello Sport after the meeting. “Of course the whistles are justified. We should be worried because we always go out of the game. I don’t know if the reasons are mental or physical. We struggled to be consistent. We lost a game that we shouldn’t have lost..
The Italian press turned on the players
He followed: “We were really booed. There is little to say, one must shut up, work and move on. I think it is a situation that can be changed, we are without many players. Now, it’s everyone’s fault. Not just the players, not just the coach, not just the club. Everyone’s fault.”. And no one was spared this Thursday in the transalpine press. “Juve derailed: do something please”title Tuttosport. The Italian media immediately released the sulfateuse to shine a light on the Juventus players. Everyone took a lot.
“It’s not just Allegri’s fault. The players’ responsibilities are also clear. Something needs to be done fast, the season was derailed after 6 league games and 2 Champions League games, both lost, setting a new negative record for the history of Juventus. Dusan Vlahovic, 7.5 million net per season, failed to control the ball properly, did not make a proper pass, remained offside. Di Maria is physically absent. Cuadrado is a ghost. McKennie, the average awkward. There are many decisive players missing. Allegri’s fault? Maybe not, but now only he can do something.”.
Allegri, culprit n°1
In this regard, the Gazzetta dello Sport anxiety. “The Champions League hangs by a thread, not good even in the league: even the team is cut for Max”wrote the publication of the pink paper that did not release the coach of the bianconero. “They (the leaders, editor’s note) listened to him, they satisfied him. Everything, or almost. A year ago, Allegri wanted a center-forward, a real number 9, a face fox: in January, they took Vlahovic, the best at that time, at least; now it is not very effective and too nervous, maybe also because it was exploited a lot. Fabio Capello also confronted Allegri on Italian television.
“It was a difficult match, Juventus never regained the upper hand. They didn’t have the pace of their opponents. After many minutes, we saw a big difference in quality and intensity. It was a difficult moment for the Bianconeri. (…) They took the scary attacks, there was no balance on the pitch. Benfica players have will, strength and speed. Happy? Before he had another team, now he can’t find the key to the problem and direction”. Always supported by his management, while the rumor was burning Twitter after the meeting about his dismissal, Allegri had to find solutions and remobilize his team.
A dressing room that asks itself
A group that is clearly not fully behind him. After the match, Angel Di Maria reportedly told Milik, who came off in the 70th minute: “Why did he change you?”. Images that are on fire in social networks. But the Turin technician does not feel under pressure. “Am I in danger? No, the hard times are part of the game. All you have to do is shut up and work. We played well in the first 20 minutes, then we started to pull back and struggle. We can say that after 2-1 the game is almost over. We could have conceded more goals, we had a chance to score at the end, but the performance would have been the same. You have to be quiet, work and think about the next league game..
He added: “These moments come, they come again, we have to leave the team with a big responsibility, we have a difficult game on Sunday, then we think about the Cup, nothing is lost”. While Juventus never lost twice in a row in the first two days of the group stages of the UEFA Champions League, a reaction was expected on Sunday in Monza on the seventh day of Serie A. of a Massimiliano Allegri more than ever in the hot seat.