Juventus boss Andrea Pirlo criticises Arthur’s vision after narrow Ferencvaros victory

Andrea Pirlo has criticised the vision of Juventus midfielder Arthur, who signed for the Italian champions from Barcelona this past summer in a part-swap deal for Miralem Pjanic.

Pirlo, appointed as Juventus coach in his first senior role during the close season, was speaking after the Italians’ hard-fought 2-1 victory over Hungarian side Ferencvaros in the Champions League.

La Roja striker Alvaro Morata came off the bench to score a 92nd minute winner for Juventus after Cristiano Ronaldo cancelled out Myrto Uzuni’s opener.

“We had intended to start with a different attitude, but we know there can be difficulties in games that seem on paper to be simple,” Pirlo told Sky Sport Italia in quotes carried by Football Italia. “We were too superficial at the start and had to chase the game.

“Our first press wasn’t vehement, which is normal after so many matches to lose a little intensity, but the important thing was not to get stretched out and allow counter-attacks. We did it a few times in the first half, but then managed to settle down.

“I expected more from the players, but Ferencvaros clammed up, we had to try to move the ball back and forth more quickly to spread them. We moved it too slowly, which made it easier for them to defend.

“Ferencvaros keep a high line and invite you to attack them, but if you don’t do it at the right moment, it plays into their hands. When we got the timing right, we were almost always dangerous.”

Arthur was criticised by Fabio Capello in the studio for his performance. Capello argued that his passing was too short, slow and horizontal.

“He got a bit pig-headed today keeping hold of the ball and trying to find more direct through balls when he should’ve spread it wide and tried to spread the Ferencvaros defence,” agreed Pirlo.

“He should’ve opened up the game more to create one-on-one situations. If the ball moved too slowly, it allowed them to get back into position.”

Capello asked whether Arthur actually has the ability or the vision to split defences. “Not much right now, but he’s learning,” replied Pirlo after a chuckle.

Elsewhere in Champions League Group G, Barcelona beat Dynamo Kyiv 4-0 in Ukraine to secure their place in the last 16 of the competition. They’re three points clear of Juve in second, with  the Catalans boasting a 100% record in Europe this season.

Featured image courtesy of Juventus.

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