Massimiliano Allegri is urging his men to keep ahead of the chasing pack by claiming all three points when they run out against Atalanta in tomorrow’s 15.00 CET kick-off in Bergamo.
Dubbed a “two-horse race” by many for the last few weeks, the recent form of Roma, who registered a resounding 4-1 win over Fiorentina last night, their seventh consecutive Serie A success, means they cannot be ruled out of the running for title honours.
Racking up wins is therefore the only way for the Bianconeri to maintain their lead over second-placed Napoli and a resurgent Giallorossi, with tomorrow’s test against the Nerazzurri an important hurdle to cross as the season enters its final straight.
Previewing the clash with the media in Vinovo, Allegri began: “Atalanta play good football on home soil and will make it a tricky test for us. We need to maintain our lead over Napoli and a win, which is the only result available to us, would enable us to do just that.
“I did say that Roma had the potential to string together a run of wins, and that’s precisely what’s happening. We have a five-point advantage over them, admittedly having played a game less, which shows you how important our triumph over them in Turin was.”
Juventus approach Sunday’s game off the back of Wednesday’s 3-0 Coppa Italia defeat to Inter at the San Siro, a result that brought an end to a formidable unbeaten run on Italian soil that began with October’s last-gasp defeat of Torino.
Allegri remained philosophical when analysing the reverse to Roberto Mancini’s men, choosing to focus on the bigger picture instead of dwelling on a blip in an otherwise incredible five months.
“It was a healthy defeat from a psychological point of view, following 21 games unbeaten. It was also a pain-free one, given that we achieved our objective of reaching the final. We played 120 minutes in Milan and ran a total of 150/60km. We’re in good shape.”
The boss admits he has yet to decide on his starting line-up for tomorrow’s trip to the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d’Italia, but is backing his strikers to do the business regardless of who gets the nod.
“I still need to work out how we’re going to line up in Bergamo. It will all depend on whether we play three or four at the back. As far as our strikers are concerned, all four are performing brilliantly this season and I’m convinced they’ll weigh in with the goals we need to win the Scudetto.”