Allegri: Important for Juventus to get back to winning ways


Massimiliano Allegri, Head Coach of Juventus, helps Federico Chiesa of Juventus to his feet during the Coppa Italia Semi-Final match between Juventus FC and SS Lazio at the Allianz Stadium on April 02, 2024 in Turin, Italy.

Juventus’ recent barren run capped off by a defeat at Lazio on Saturday has heaped a lot of pressure on coach Massimiliano Allegri. At halftime in tonight’s first leg of the Coppa Italia semi-final against the same opponent from the weekend, the jeers aimed at the coach and team seemed quite apt for a side that appears to have lost their way in recent weeks.

However, the players came out fired up from the break and were able to bag two goals while maintaining a recently-rare clean sheet to take a two-goal lead back to Rome in three weeks, with a spot in the final at stake.

Speaking after the game, the coach started off with questions about the offside call that wiped away an early Juve penalty that could have changed the complexion of the contest.

“The decisions of the referee and VAR are to be respected, so there’s no point debating it.

“The important thing was to get back to winning ways, even if the Coppa Italia is a different tournament to Serie A. The first half was very balanced, we accelerated in the second half, got two goals against a very strong Lazio side, but it’s not over and we must do well in the second leg too.”

What did the coach say to his side at the break?

“I told them to run towards the opposition goal… That’s the truth, you know. When I say football is a simple sport, I really do believe that. I told them to run towards the opposition goal and we’d figure something out.”

There weren’t too many smiles on the Juve bench after the final whistle, what gives?

“We have to get this season sorted one brick at a time to achieve the objectives that we had set. This negative period was down to everyone, first and foremost me. There are moments in football, the lads did well to keep their balance and above all have the mental strength to play like this.

“I am sad to say it, because Alex Sandro has 300 games for Juventus, he won five Scudetto titles, is a great professional and deserves respect. It’s not good to hear some in the crowd jeer him, especially as he came on and made two crucial tackles.”

What did he have to say about the rift between the supporters, with the ultras singing in support of the coach while the other fans appear to have had enough of him.

“I respect the fans and the fans need to cheer on the team.

“Many things can be said, but nobody can doubt our effort. The lads played as a team this evening, with great humility and determination. They need to enjoy this night, because they fully deserved it.”

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