Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri calls on his side to be close to perfect to beat a a great teama in Real Madrid. The Bianconeri are in the semi-finals of the Champions League for the first time since 2003, and will face Los Merengues in the first leg in Turin tomorrow night.”If wea re talking about a Champions League semi-final, wea re talking about top-notch teams,” Allegri explained in his pre-match Press conference.
“When you play these games you have to playa I dona t want to say a perfect game, because therea s no such thing, but you have to do great things in attack and defence. I dona t think that Juventus-Real Madrid and Real Madrid-Juventus are two games which will end 0-0, so we have to be good, especially in attack.”
“Theya re European champions, theya re the holders, so ita s true that they might be slight favourites ahead of us. That said, ita s not a semi-final where we have nothing to lose. If we lose we wona t make the final. We have to remember what wea ve done so far, and make the most of our chances, in the knowledge that wea re facing a great team, with great players.”
The former Milan Coach replaced Antonio Conte on the Bianconeri bench last summer, a move which was initially treated with hostility.”I have absolutely nothing to say [to the doubters],” Allegri said.”In the end, all that counts in football are the results. At the start of the season, everyone can talk, and at the end all the remains are the results.”
“For me, what matters is what Ia ve done so far for Juventus. I think the results have been fairly good, and Ia m proud. I think the club I work for, and the lads, the players who I coach.”
Allegri appeared to hint that he will play with a back-four.”Youa re all calm and good with numbers. Ancelotti has given you four, and Ia ll give you another foura ..Hea s a Coach whom I respect as a person, but especially for the things hea s achieved, as hea s won in Italy, England, France and Spain. As I said, ita s hard to imagine the two games will end 0-0, so wea ll have to be good in attack and defence.”
Both teams will have notable absences, with the vistors bereft of Luka Modric, and the Old Lady without Paul Pogba. While expressing his disappointment that the pair will not feature, Allegri hinted Pogba could feature in the second leg.”Ia m disappointed, because it would be better if Pogba and Modric were on the pitch for these two games,” Allegri insisted.”We hope to have Pogba for the return match.”
Juventus striker Carlos Tevez admits he a did not expecta a Champions League semi-final, but wants to win the competition.”I didna t expect a semi-final,” Tevez admitted in the pre-match Press conference.”I expected to win the League, and we wanted to fight as much as possible for the Champions League.”I think it will be a very difficult semi-final, I believe ita s wide-open, the two games will be very hard-fought and open.”
“I dona t think ita s a semi-final in which there are favourites, whoever makes fewer mistakes will win the game.”
The Bianconeri face Real Madrid tomorrow night in the first leg of their first semi-final appearance in the competition since 2003.