23.04.2017 23:57 - in: Serie A S

    Allegri heaps praise on Juve

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    “Our energy and focus might have dropped off after the Champions League, but the lads approached the match in the right way,” said the Juve boss

    Massimiliano Allegri lauded his Juventus side after they capped a famous week with a comfortable 4-0 win over Genoa in Turin on Sunday night.

    “The lads approached the game in the right way,” said the Bianconeri coach after the game. “It wasn’t easy because our energy and focus might have dropped off after the Champions League but the players did themselves proud – their motivation levels were spot on.

    “We’re not a perfect machine because we still have room for improvement, but the team really is having a great season. It’s absolutely extraordinary to be on 83 points with five matches to play and have qualified for the Coppa Italia final and the Champions League semi-finals.”

    While Juventus showed all the technical skill and prowess we’ve come to expect from the team this season, they also adapted seamlessly to a slightly different tactical set-up against Genoa.

    “We had to put the running in because Genoa were man-marking us,” said Allegri. “[Paulo] Dybala was very good at losing his marker and creating three-versus-two situations for us – that meant we could open up space to hit [Gonzalo] Higuain through the middle.

    “It’s still too early to be talking about the title. We have to remember that we still have to play Roma and until it’s mathematically assured we can’t talk about the Scudetto. We have a couple of days to rest now and then we’ll focus on Atalanta, which won’t be an easy game. After that, we have four days before the Monaco match so that’s plenty of time to recover and prepare for the clash. We’ve won nothing yet and have to take it one match at a time.”

    Allegri was keen to shrug off the plaudits for his role in creating what is a rock-solid Juventus defensive unit.

    “I haven’t created a masterpiece or anything. We had to make some changes because we were lagging a bit and the team needed a breath of fresh air,” said the Juve boss.

    “[Mario] Mandzukic started with the handbrake on tonight, but then he did fantastically well. He has a great engine on him – he wins it back quickly, he’s full of running and he has exceptional technical ability. He plays a key role as a third forward but he helps out as a midfielder too.

    “I think Higuain had an incredible game too. He got nothing wrong and all that was lacking was a goal.

    "[Claudio] Marchisio produced a good performance from both a physical and a technical point of view. He’s a great player and he was always going to need time after the injury he sustained last year. I think he’s going to finish the season on the up.”

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