Massimliano Allegri has warned his men of the pitfalls of underestimating Genoa, believing a “big performance” is necessary if they are to end a great week on a winning note tomorrow afternoon at Juventus Stadium.
The Rossoblu, however, are the only team to have overcome the Bianconeri this season and, with a strong record away from home and a good seven days’ work under their belts, may fancy their chances of upsetting the odds once again on Sunday.
Speaking to the media in Vinovo, the 47-year-old began: “We have a very difficult game against Genoa tomorrow, they're the only team that's beaten us in the league. They've picked up 20 points on the road and have got themselves back in the game from losing positions on seven occasions.
“It’s also going to be tough because they’ve had a week to prepare for it, while we basically only have today. So we'll have to come up with a big performance.”
Tomorrow marks the start of a run of three games that Allegri believes could have a significant say in concluding the club’s mission for a fourth consecutive title.
And a nine-point return from these matches would keep the mood buoyant ahead of crunch Coppa Italia and Champions League ties that lie in store from the start of April.
“I think the next three games, so tomorrow's, with a break in between when we can maybe recharge our batteries and get a few players back, then Empoli at home and Parma away, could prove to be decisive in clinching the Scudetto.
“We have to make sure we don't complicate things for ourselves and ensure we're on a high going into the Coppa Italia return leg in Florence, and our quarter-final against Monaco.”
Reflecting on yesterday’s Champions League draw, which pitted the league leaders with French side Monaco, Allegri provided a different take on press reports that suggested the Bianconeri could perhaps consider themselves fortunate to be playing the Ligue 1 outfit.
“I've read that Juventus apparently got a 'lucky' draw. But I think we can look at it a different way. Considering the way we played at home against Borussia and up in Dortmund maybe it's the other teams who breathed a sigh of relief after avoiding us.”
The Tuscan tactician concluded by praising his players for a string of recent performances that have rightly earned their fair share of plaudits.
He did, however, insist there is still plenty of room for improvement and encouraged his players to keep the club on the upward trajectory it currently finds itself on.
“You need to maintain balance in everything you do and always keep a low profile because one day you're great and the next you're not. That's the good thing and the bad thing about football. We're doing well at the moment and this is when we have to work even harder because we must be better than we were three months ago.
“I think the players have much greater belief in themselves now. We've all done an amazing job - myself and everyone who works with me, the club - to keep us on an upwards curve. That has to be our aim.
“I think it's a process that began four years ago with the first Scudetto. We have greater self-belief and confidence but we mustn't stop here. We have to kick on and try to iron out the things we're still not doing right.”