NEWS
Sunday May 4 2014
Conte: 'Scudetto and Coppa shock'

Antonio Conte prepares the Scudetto party in Juventus-Atalanta, but inevitably was shocked by the Coppa Italia Final chaos.

The Bianconeri need only a victory – or for Roma not to beat Catania this afternoon – in order to secure the title. It kicks off on Monday at 20.00 UK time (19.00 GMT), click here for a match preview.

“The important thing isn’t when or how the Scudetto arrives, but that it does arrive,” said Conte in his Press conference. “I achieved promotion with Bari when watching television.

“The Scudetto is always special, especially a third in a row, as that had never happened to us before. Even legendary Coaches were unable to get three consecutive titles, but I am a realist and until I have the Scudetto trophy in my hands, I will not celebrate.”

Roma Coach Rudi Garcia confessed the title race “is over” in his Press conference on Saturday, complimenting the Bianconeri on their record-breaking campaign.

“I have always given praise to Roma for their excellent season, as their performance pushed us on to give our best too,” added Conte.

“We have an antagonist of a very high level that is forcing us to keep our foot firmly on the accelerator. I always complimented Roma and will continue to do so.

“Similarly, I feel the need to compliment Napoli and Fiorentina for last night’s Coppa Italia Final. I hope next season these teams can do well in Europe and help Italy to climb back up the rankings. We must make Italy important at a European level again.”

Juventus had hoped to boost the rankings, but were eliminated in the Europa League semi-final by Benfica, so Portugal leapfrogged Italy.

“I watched that game back and the sensations I had from the touchline were correct. I am very satisfied with the growth of my team and its consolidation in Europe.

“Dropping down into the Europa League helped us to grow, as it was the first time for many in the squad. We still proved we are on a par with the big clubs and have what it takes to challenge in the major competitions.

“I did complain about the referee, but I did so after the game, not beforehand like our opponents. I still think we deserved more.”

Conte inevitably commented on the chaotic scenes in Rome last night, which saw the Coppa Italia Final delayed by 45 minutes because three Napoli fans were shot by a local man in the Tor di Quinto area of the city.

The game only went ahead after intense negotiations between police, clubs, local authorities and more importantly the ultra leaders in the Stadio Olimpico.

“The problem is that periodically something happens, we all get angry and it becomes news, but then nobody does anything.

“Slowly the situation is getting worse and worse, so we must be careful not to just be moralistic when the incident happens, but to come together and build something.

“We talk and talk and talk, but it just exasperates the whole situation. The signs we are sending out are not the best from the system, those who set the rules and the football authorities.”

After the game there was a pitch invasion from Napoli fans, as stewards were warned beforehand not to try stopping them.

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