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17 Mar 2014 - in: Serie A

Conte: “An unbelievable Juve”

Antonio Conte reiterates his belief that the Juve side who have made Genoa their latest victims this evening at the Luigi Ferraris are something special

Antonio Conte has hailed another gritty performance from a Bianconeri side for whom he continues to have nothing but praise after they rose to a 1-0 win away at Genoa this evening.

Nonetheless, after classing the Scudetto as 50 per cent won following last Sunday’s success over Fiorentina, this time the Juve boss was reluctant to continue the theme, a reflection of his desire for the league leaders to not get ahead of themselves as crunch time approaches.

Speaking after the final whistle, the 44-year-old began: “I prefer not to state percentages of something that could then turn out to not happen. But of course coming to Genoa and winning against a team who played the game of their lives is very important.

“The players begin to get tired and only a great team could have won like we did here today in spite of some debatable moments.”

The scale of Juve’s achievement in picking up a win tonight is only increased by the dogged determination Genoa showed in trying to stop them, and Conte went on to express his admiration for the opposition.

“Their defenders were very aggressive, they kept hold of possession and looked to play. They maybe could have been more precise with the final ball, but they were very good in both attack and defence.”

The Juve boss continued by speaking of how the side’s latest success sends out a clear message to the rest of Serie A.

“Moving forward at this extraordinary pace can be discouraging for the chasing pack because we’ve now got an incredible 75 points. Our objective is delivering a third consecutive Scudetto for the club president and now we’ll go to Florence looking to reach the next round of the Europa League.”

Conte may well implement further squad rotation in that last 16 second leg clash at the Artemio Franchi, a strategy he concluded by explaining to be extremely valuable.

“The problem Barzagli had today should serve as an example. He had a calf injury and we gave him a breather on Thursday to be able to play him today, but instead he’s still had to miss out. This should be a clear sign of how important squad rotation is.”