NEWS
Tuesday March 12 2019
Max Allegri realistic on Juventus Champions League chances

Juventus Coach Max Allegri admits his side face a massive task in overturning their two-goal Champions League deficit against Atletico Madrid.

The second leg of the Round of 16 takes place in Turin on Tuesday after last month’s opening 2-0 victory for Atleti in the Spanish capital.

“Diego Simeone’s results speak for him, as he was in two Champions League Finals, losing one on penalties and the other he was winning until the last minute,” Allegri told his pre-match press conference.

“Atletico are one of the best teams in Europe and have been over the last 10 years. It’s a marvellous fixture in the Round of 16 and we must be up to the task. I am certain we will be.

“It’s a Round of 16 tie, but if we were to call this the biggest match of the season, we’d be in real trouble. If we do go through, it’s not as if we’ve won the Champions League, as there are other games. We need calm and to take it one game at a time.

“If we manage to overturn the first leg result, it will be extraordinary. After that we either think about the quarter-finals or ending the season on the right note.

“The team put in a good first half performance, but our only mistake was after the ball hit the crossbar, we thought that we’d got away with it and relaxed.

“You just have to see the set plays in the first half, where they never got near it, and the last couple of set plays where they threw men into the box.

“We need to use our strengths, our determination and aggression, all supported by the passion of our fans who will certainly give us a big hand.

“Atletico haven’t conceded in five games, so that bodes well, by the law of averages. We’ve got to play in a different way to the approach we had in Madrid, with more vertical passes, pace and pressing.”

Football Italia website