NEWS
Sunday March 23 2014
Conte: 'I understood dismissal'

Antonio Conte accepted his bizarre double red card and hailed Juventus for their humility in Catania.

Both Conte and Rolando Maran were sent to the stands simultaneously before half-time in the Bianconeri’s 1-0 victory.

“I think Mr Damato wanted to send a signal to the players on the field by sending off the Coaches and trying to calm things down. It was basically a warning, as he couldn’t send the players off that early,” Conte told Sky Sport Italia.

“Rolando and I both understood the situation and it wasn’t an easy game to officiate, as it was very, very fiery on and off the field. Juve did well to keep our heads, so I am very proud of the lads.”

Carlos Tevez got the only goal at the Stadio Massimino, where Gonzalo Bergessio was eventually sent off too.

“It’s another step towards the Scudetto. We have to give credit to Roma, who are also doing something incredible, so we need to keep on our toes as nothing has been decided yet.

“The Europa League will make us play every three days and Roma have shown they won’t give up to the end, so we can’t lower our guard.”

Daniel Osvaldo had several opportunities on the night, but failed to finish them off. How is the Southampton loaner settling in?

“He has settled in very well. Daniel arrived in January, so we had to prepare a different approach for him. He has great qualities and trained the right way, so he can become an important player for Juventus.

“He has technique and I am happy with what he’s doing at the moment. I am convinced that if we have time to work with him physically as well as tactically, we can see a whole other level to his game. I know he can do so much more.”

Juve are heading towards their third consecutive Scudetto and targeting a record 100 points.

“This team has improved in terms of maturity and confidence in its third year together, but also maintained great humility. That is why Juventus are having an extraordinary campaign with so many points.

“It is inevitable that in the third year our opponents are getting to know us and plan ways around our game. The first year our intensity was spectacular because we didn’t have Cup games.”

Conte rotated the squad for this trip to the bottom of the table club and defended his choices.

“Apart from the strikers, I only had Asamoah on the bench. We have a remarkable number of injuries to deal with, so the same players have to keep it going. They are proving they are great men as well as great players.”

There is a midweek round, then Juve go into the Europa League against Olympique Lyonnais next month.

“We always step on to the field for the victory. In the Europa League we now face Lyon and we certainly want to continue, that is beyond doubt. We know there are nine games left in the Serie A season, so we’ll try to balance the energy levels out.

“I just cannot stand that after the first leg some said my choices were incomprehensible.”

Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £11,000 to be won monthly!

FOOTBALL ITALIA RELATED NEWS

TODAY'S FRONT PAGES