Giorgio Chiellini called winning “a drug” for Juventus and fears “the art of defending” has been lost in Italy, but insists he was “always fair.”
The centre-back spoke to Undici magazine about his past, present and future in Turin.
“This season is no less motivating than any other, because for years Juventus have been racing only against ourselves,” said Chiellini.
“I can’t choose between our victories, as they are all wonderful, and it’s not true that in the end it becomes boring. Winning is like a drug. It’s something you need, because if you feel that emotion once, you do everything to experience it again.”
He is known as a rather rugged defender who relishes breaking up the opposition play.
“You have to disturb the movements of the opposition strikers and prevent them, doing things that make them short-circuit. I have always been like that and I think that’s how you ought to go into these grand duels.
“I’m certainly not a pleasant player to face on the field, but I’m always fair. Nowadays I am less impulsive, as I can reflect on my actions better. When I was 22 years old, every game was a battle, even a war, because at that age I could just let out all my tension and adrenaline.
“Even then, I wasn’t nasty, but I was a pain to play against. Now I’ve become accustomed to it, but back then you don’t know where to direct your energy and tension.”
Chiellini has been critical of Pep Guardiola’s approach to football and explained his theory in greater detail.
“I believe the advent of Guardiola’s style of football has changed the nature of something we in Italy did so well for many years, which is the art of defending.
“There is a remarkable generational gap in defenders and that’s what caused it. Now lads who arrive in Serie A know how to spread the play and pass the ball, they can make a pin-point pass 40 metres away, but they haven’t the slightest idea how to man-mark or take players on on-on-one.”
With this in mind, would Chiellini like to become a Coach and pass on his knowledge to the next generation?
“When I do hang up my boots, I want to remain in football, but with a career more behind a desk than as a Coach.”