19.12.2015 14.30 - in: Serie A S

    Allegri: "A must-win game"

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    Massimiliano Allegri urges his men to adopt the correct approach against Carpi: “We’ve dropped plenty of points against so-called ‘smaller’ sides and we can’t afford to put a foot wrong tomorrow”

    Massimiliano Allegri is calling on the Bianconeri to turn in a flawless performance at top flight newcomers Carpi and come away with a win that would enable them to sign off a triumphant 2015 in style.

    Dropped points against the likes of Udinese, Chievo, Frosinone and Sassuolo, coupled with the opposition’s midweek morale-boosting Coppa Italia last 16 triumph over Fiorentina, mean that tomorrow’s encounter is anything but straightforward for the reigning champions.  

    But Allegri is confident his men are mature enough to handle the potential “banana skin” that lies in wait and is backing them to register a seventh consecutive Serie A triumph when they cross the white line in Modena on Sunday lunchtime.

    Speaking to the media in Vinovo, he began: “It’s a must-win game for us. We approach it on the back of a run of important successes, but let’s not forget that we’ve dropped plenty of points against so-called ‘smaller’ sides. We mustn’t put a foot wrong tomorrow.

    “The game before the Christmas break is a potential banana skin, along with the opening fixture of the season and the first match back in January. We do however possess a team full of responsible players and I’m certain we’ll approach the encounter in the correct fashion.”

    A win at the Stadio Alberto Braglia would leave Juventus in a strong position for the start of the New Year, placing them right into the thick of 2015/16's Scudetto contenders.

    It would represent a remarkable turnaround in fortunes following an inconsistent start to this season’s title defence, with Allegri citing the benefits of hard work and a level-headed approach as the key factors behind his team’s resurgence.

    “We're playing with more confidence now and we're approaching and managing games better too. I think that's a good sign both for the present and for the future. There's no secret, just hard work and maintaining a sense of perspective. 

    “Perhaps we were too quick to draw conclusions about this team at the start of the season. You can solve problems through hard work without getting too depressed when things aren't going so well. And similarly you mustn't get carried away when you're doing well, as we are now, because it's a long season."

    Concluding with a thought on the title race, the Tuscan tactician added: “Roma can’t be ruled out, they’re through to the Champions League knockout stages and still in the hunt for the title, as are Napoli.

    "Inter are doing well and possess a strong squad and a manager who has won titles. Plus, they’re not playing in Europe so that could be an advantage for them.

    “It’s likely the title race will go right down to the penultimate or final fixture of the season. We need to be at that finishing line and aim to make 2016 better than the final few months of 2015.” 

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