Giorgio Chiellini says the Bianconeri are determined to bounce back from last night’s disappointing 1-0 defeat away to Atletico Madrid with a positive result against Roma this coming Sunday in Turin.
The defender acknowledges that matters could have turned out somewhat better during Wednesday evening’s Champions League clash in Spain but believes Juventus will learn from the game and use it to their advantage starting Sunday.
Speaking exclusively to Sky, Chiellini began by analysing yesterday’s loss: “Regardless of the defeat last night, I thought we played well on the whole. We expected Atletico to approach the match in the manner they did and we knew it would give us an indication as to how the game would pan out.
“We tried to steer away from adopting the same tactics as Atletico, because it would have played into their strengths - especially at their ground."
He continued: “We tried to prevent being caught on the counter attack and endeavoured to open the game up a bit more and find players running through the channels. We kept the ball well and I thought we covered their forwards so they couldn’t create chances.
“However, we were unable to find spaces for our best players in order for them to take advantage of the opportunities. But, we played well and if matters would have ended 0-0, it would have been a good result.”
The defender, who has re-established himself in the side after returning from injury in early September, outlined the importance of taking one’s opportunities at the highest level: “In the end, it was a tight game with very few chances for either side. It was edging towards a 0-0 draw and we should have been more vigilant to ensure it would have indeed ended that way.
“We had the odd opening but nothing clear-cut. Sometimes you just have to take them, just like Pogba’s effort in the first-half. They did with theirs, and once that happens, it’s always hard to get back into the game against teams of that calibre.”
Choosing not to dwell too much on yesterday’s defeat, the 30-year-old had a final word on Atleti before turning his attentions to Sunday evening’s mouth-watering meeting with Roma: “We were able to get through the game, but not with the result we were hoping for. However, we’ll learn from this experience and it’ll help us further down the line.
With both sides going into the game on maximum points having begun the season with five victories apiece, Chiellini expressed that the Bianconeri would use their previous results so far this campaign as an indicator on how to approach the Giallorossi.
“Our strength is assessing the positives and negatives of every game so we can prepare for the next one in the best possible way. Sunday’s game is important, it’s a clash between two of Italy’s top teams.”
Francesco Totti rolled back the years with a fine performance and goal against Manchester City on Tuesday evening but Chiellini was quick to point out that the Giallorossi are far from a team who rely heavily on their evergreen captain: “We’re ready to face Roma, a side who aren’t just all about Totti. We respect them: they have many important and quality players at their disposal.”
With media outlets touting Sunday’s match as a possible defining moment in the title race, the Italian international downplayed the fxiture's importance so early on in the new league season.
“The game won’t determine anything given that it’s still early days. Having said that, it’s important we perform to the best of our abilities: we’ve both begun the campaign in good form, and it’ll be a tense match where it’s vital we take our chances.
“Sunday’s meeting will be a whole different affair: Atletico and Roma are poles apart in terms of character. We’ll try to limit their best players and make it difficult for them, knowing we have men who can hurt them.”
Chiellini concluded proceedings by assessing his side’s aspirations for the remainder of the campaign: “We’ve brought in some new faces which have strengthened the squad and this helps us all to grow as individuals. We’re up against a league full of ever-improving teams: we want to defend our title once again and have a good run in Europe as well.”