Friday September 22 2017
Pjanic: €100m too much for Belotti

Miralem Pjanic said he learned the importance of winning 1-0 at Juventus, but €100m “is too much” for Torino hitman Andrea Belotti.

The Derby della Mole kicks off on Saturday at 19.45 UK time (18.45 GMT).

“I would like for the derby to end 1-0, because here at Juve I learned it’s a great way to win,” the Juve midfielder told La Stampa newspaper.

“The sides are more or less equal right now, though it’s an advantage to play at home. We must be present in the amtch at all times with intensity and hard work. I just want to win, even 1-0n or 2-0 would be perfect.

“The derby is a game dedicated to the fans, as they care so much about this. I have a lot of Granata-supporting friends here in Turin and at times it does annoy them, because we always win and they hope we’ll slip up. It’s a healthy rivalry.

“What happens if we lose the derby? I won’t even think about that. I am very good friends with (Torino forward) Adem Ljajic, we talk often and I really hope he has a great season. He has talent and can make the difference between the lines. The only thing he needs now is consistency, to score regularly and be decisive.”

The undoubted star of the Granata squad is Belotti, who has a €100m release clause in his contract.

“He is having a good season, but €100m is a huge amount. It’s too much,” continued Pjanic. “It’s especially remarkable when you consider Cristiano Ronaldo was worth that and scores two or three goals per game.

“There are only two at that level: Cristiano Ronaldo and Leo Messi. After them, the market has just taken off completely.”

Juventus paid €90m to get Gonzalo Higuain from Napoli, but he has struggled to replicate last season’s form.

“He is an extraordinary player and I will support him always. If everyone is picking over what you do, it means you are an important player.

“This sort of period is something every striker goes through, but we will help him and he will break that drought.”