“It must have been the kitmen’s fault, giving us ten shirts of different colours because we couldn’t pass each other the ball.”
Massimiliano Allegri was in jovial mood when asked why Juventus found the first 60 minutes of this evening’s game against Lazio at the Stadio Olimpico so difficult.
The Bianconeri were having real trouble stringing moves together and consistently gifted up possession to their opponents.
“We misplaced a lot of passes but it’s my fault,” the coach admitted. “I tried playing Emre Can in front of the defence but at the moment he’s not fully adjusted to match tempo and movement, so I put him in a difficult situation.
“In the second half I moved [Rodrigo] Bentancur and we switched to a two-man midfield base; from that moment Emre started playing well. Until the 60th minute, we lost possession too much, let them counter and Ciro Immobile nearly made it 2-0. For the last 30 minutes, we did better and managed to win a difficult game, but it’s never been easy to beat Lazio here in Rome."
Allegri made up for his earlier mistake in fine fashion, changing the course of the match completely by inserting Federico Bernardeschi and Joao Cancelo.
“The players on the bench are more important than those who start because they can change the game if they come on with the right attitude,” he stressed. “Was [Wojciech] Szczesny our man of the match? He’s doing really well, but we already knew he’s a great goalkeeper. His presence and focus improved significantly over the 90 minutes.
“It was very important for us to win given Napoli’s result,” Allegri concluded. “I had told the lads that we might have to win even by playing badly.”