Antonello Cuccureddu says that Antonio Conte must believe he can repeat success with Juventus, but admits he may listen to offers from elsewhere.
The tactician has hinted that his three-year tenure with the Old Lady may be coming to an end, ahead of anticipated talks with club directors over following up the team’s success of three consecutive Scudetti.
For one of the club’s former representatives, who appeared over 300 times for them during his playing days, the anxiety over trying to build on the club’s recent trophy haul may not be the only factor behind Conte’s hesitation.
“We must understand what is behind this. I do not think it depends trivially on the fear of not winning,” Cuccureddu has reflected to the Corriere dello Sport.
“Abroad there are many cases of Coaches staying for a long time in their role - not every year have they won, but that hasn’t been a problem.
“In Italy that is difficult? I know that and I understand the pressure that Conte feels - they are great at this level, let alone at the top of Serie A.
“But, there is not a rule that after three seasons, a cycle is finished. It is difficult to repeat, certainly, but in the end Juventus are always pushing.
“Maybe they can win again, though not necessarily by reaching 100 points, which is a very real goal this year.”
The former defender was asked of the prospect of Juve’s opponents strengthening in the summer.
“They will certainly do so, already there are hints at their intentions, and it is not the only risk for the coming season - Juve have many internationals and the World Cup will have an impact.
“I do not deny that it will be difficult for them to repeat, but I insist in believing that it is possible. The real issue, however, is the Champions League - Conte wants to win, but it is not said that the club has the strength to invest and structure accordingly.
“And then who knows, maybe some calls from elsewhere will be heeded - if he does not have the squad he desires, he may wish to accept any of the offers that involve new motivations.”
Cuccureddu was asked if the debate between Coach and club is appropriate.
“It is normal and you can have that desire to leave as a winner. Conte is the greatest of all, the protagonist of the rebirth, but do not forget that there are great players and he must always thank the club for the opportunity they have given him.
“If there are misunderstandings that have arisen, we will not know, but I still hope that he remains. And if he does not win for a year that he then has patience - it happened to [Sir Alex] Ferguson.”