Massimiliano Allegri says Juventus are raring to go for tomorrow night’s Champions League final meeting with Barcelona at Berlin’s Olympiastadion.
The boss believes his team have enjoyed a productive working week in Vinovo and, aside from a late injury to Giorgio Chiellini, has no fresh fitness concerns ahead of Saturday night’s showpiece match in the German capital.
Central defenders Andrea Barzagli and Angelo Ogbonna are the men vying for the nod as Chiellini’s replacement, and Allegri revealed that the former is currently in pole position for a starting berth.
Addressing the media in Berlin, he began: “The team has worked calmly over this past week and we’re ready, both physically and psychologically. It’s a pity about Chiellini’s injury, he’s had a great season and was with us all the way through our Champions League journey. Thankfully I’ve got Barzagli and Ogbonna available. If Andrea is fit, as it seems at the moment, he will get the nod tomorrow.”
It has been an incredible maiden campaign for the Tuscan tactician, who took over the reins in the summer, and despite his team exceeding all expectations in Europe, he insists the Bianconeri aren’t finished just yet.
“We started out with the important aim of getting into Europe’s top eight. We’ve gone beyond that and are in the final two. Now we’ll look to finish first.”
Much has been made of the influence of Barcelona’s front three and the Bianconeri’s ability to put the shackles on them, but Allegri maintains the onus is on his team to build the play and offer an attacking threat of their own.
“We mustn’t think about how to stop Barcelona, but instead how to build the play ourselves, because it’s unlikely the game will finish goalless. They’re a technical side, who count on their attack as their greatest weapon, but like every team they also have weaknesses. It will be important to stay right in the game for its entire duration and have a slice of luck on our side.”