Antonio Conte was quick to praise his men’s application after a mature performance at a difficult venue enabled him to secure his first away victory over Parma as Juventus manager.
With Tuesday night’s mouthwatering Champions League tie against Real Madrid on the horizon, Conte was eager for his players to maintain their focus on the task in hand and not be distracted by the looming encounter with the Spanish giants.
And they did just that, turning in a spirited, united performance against an in-form Gialloblu outfit before striking with 13 minutes remaining to take the points back to Turin.
Speaking to reporters following the final whistle, the 44-year-old said: “I’m happy, we wanted to win and were eventually rewarded for our efforts. People could have already been thinking about our game against Real, but everyone showed the right focus and mentality.”
Crucial to tonight’s triumph was Fabio Quagliarella’s sensational impact on the game just seconds after entering the fray as a second-half substitute on 76 minutes, slamming an audacious shot against the bar which was subsequently followed up by an eagle-eyed Pogba.
Paying tribute to those involved in the move, Conte added: “Fabio’s shot was incredibile, these are the kinds of things he’s capable of producing, but don’t tell him that, otherwise he’ll start trying his luck from the halfway line… Paul also did well to keep his shot low, it wasn’t easy.”
This evening saw Conte deploy Angelo Ogbonna at the heart of his three-man rearguard, and the manager singled out his summer signing for special praise when asked about individual displays at the Tardini.
“I was pleased with everyone’s performances, from Padoin to Ogbonna. Angelo came from Torino where he played with personality and charisma, but he’s only been with us for three months and it’s a completely different environment for him. Anything you do here, positive or negative, is highlighted, but today you saw his potential. He needs to keep working, show extra bite and gain the awareness that wearing this shirt can bring you.”
Ending with a thought on Claudio Marchisio, Conte added: “Claudio played a high-intensity 60 minutes. He’s one of those who has featured most in the last few games and I wanted to give him a bit of a break ahead of Tuesday. He’s recently been affected by a knee problem he sustained at the start of the season, but I’m convinced we’ll soon see him back to his old self.”