30.10.2016 00:09 - in: Serie A S

    Allegri: “A different match in the second half”

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    The boss praises Juve for stepping up their game after the break against Napoli: “We conceded a goal we could have avoided but we pressed on, took a few risks and got the win”

    There's joy in the Juve camp tonight after a big win over fellow title challengers Napoli, but Massimiliano Allegri was keen to remain grounded at such an early stage of the season.

    “It was an important win tonight but it's not decisive,” the coach explained following the Bianconeri's 2-1 triumph at Juventus Stadium.

    “We needed to win to stay top and put seven points between us and Napoli, but there's still a long way to go and an awful lot of points left to play for.”

    Allegri then credited Napoli for making a game of it but insisted Juve were good for the win after stepping up the pace in the second period.

    “Napoli played very well – they really do play some lovely football. However, I think we saw a different match in the second half. We upped the tempo and Napoli started to wane a little. We pressed on and took a few risks, although we still could have avoided conceding that goal.”

    As usual it was a team win but the boss nonetheless singled out a few players for particular praise, starting with his front pairing.

    “Gonzalo [Higuain] was relaxed about playing and he did well. He's got a lot to offer: he stretches the opposition and works hard for the team.

    “[Mario] Mandzukic played well too. He and Gonzalo swapped roles well up front.”

    Allegri had words of praise for his midfielders as well.

    “It's a shame some of the fans decided to boo Hernanes when he came off – he didn't deserve that. He organised our play and helped out defensively too.

    “I'm happy with [Miralem] Pjanic too. He was a bit short of breath towards the end but I need him at the moment. With [Paulo] Dybala and [Marko] Pjaca out we need someone like him to inject quality in midfield.”

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