Antonio Conte hailed an “historic Scudetto,” but refused to commit his future. “I will always be a Juventus fan.”
He had called the first title one of rebirth, the second a confirmation, so how would Conte describe the third in a row?
“I’d call this the historic Scudetto. That is the most pertinent word for what this team has done over three years, having finished seventh twice in a row,” he told Sky Sport Italia.
“I doubt Juventus could’ve done any more than this over the past three years.”
Conte has not confirmed whether he will renew his contract and his comments after the Scudetto celebrations left the door wide open to an exit.
“We have always said, along with the club, that we’ll talk it over when the situation calms down and analyse every aspect. These have been three very intense and stressful years, so I thank the lads for their incredible efforts and tonight confirms their professionalism.
“Last night they asked to have a dinner together and this evening they were out there, ready to play and concentrated.”
Tonight’s 1-0 win over Atalanta was Conte’s 100th victory on the Juventus bench. Will there be another 100?
“I am very proud to have, along with the lads, achieved that tally. There are exceptional numbers in our campaign, as I think we have an average of almost 90 points each season. That is tough to improve upon.
“I repeat, we have to evaluate everything in all aspects and we’ll see.
“People often forget that the history of Juventus becomes a handicap to growth, even on a European level. Last season we went out in the Champions League quarter-finals to the eventual winners and people acted as if we’d failed.
“This term we certainly didn’t have a good Champions League, but we grew in the Europa League and went so close to the Final. Everything needs time and patience.
“It’s a handicap because the fans want this club to be a protagonist in Europe again, but it’s not simple for many reasons.
“I think what this team did in Italy cannot be improved. We have to understand many things after three very intense and tiring years. Those close to me know what I put into the team over three years and what the players put into it with me.
“Sabbatical year? No, I just need to talk to the club and we’ll make the necessary evaluations. I am a Juventino, I was even when I went around the country to work as a Coach and learn. I am now that I am the Juventus Coach and will be in future. It is my family.
“Having said that, we need to sit down, confront our opinions on matters and in a relaxed manner see what the situation is.
“I don’t want to say I need reassurances. I will say what I need to say with the club, so together we can evaluate what is best for Juventus. I want what is best for Juventus, in every way.”
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