Monday March 3 2014
‘Juve surprised by Chiellini call-up’

Antonio Conte and Beppe Marotta have admitted that Juventus are ‘surprised’ to have seen Giorgio Chiellini included in the latest Italy squad.

The defender is on the verge of returning to full fitness after almost a month on the sidelines with a calf injury and was an unnamed substitute for yesterday’s win at Milan.

However, his inclusion in Cesare Prandelli’s squad for Wednesday’s friendly against Spain in Madrid was not expected, according to the Bianconeri’s director general.

“Chiellini’s call-up has come after not playing for three weeks and doing different workouts in training,” began Marotta to Rai Sport yesterday night.

“We intended to recover him for this week and so we did not expect this. I do not want controversy, and why I say this is that he has not yet played with us - he was on the bench only in case of dire emergency.”

Marotta was talking after yesterday’s 2-0 win at San Siro, which has stretched Juve’s lead at the top of the table to 11 points.

“I agree with Mondonico, for the first half we have suffered, we were in trouble, they were the most brilliant and dynamic, and thanks to our humility we have responded and scored with a great action.

“The whole group, however, is humble, not just those on the field, we have seen a strong team in terms of temperament.”

Conte continued Marotta’s comments on Chiellini.

“I expected at least half a call from Prandelli to ask how Chiellini is. I find it a little impolite. Chiellini has not played for three weeks, Friday he has returned to training and we took him to Milan but, in my mind, there was no thought of using him.

“I’m sorry to see him called, so many times the Coach asks for collaboration and availability, which we give a lot, because we provide a lot of players, I expected at least half a phone call.

“[Monday] I expect the headlines: ‘Conte attacks Prandelli’.”

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