Saturday January 20 2018
Ballardini: 'Genoa are a team'

Davide Ballardini admits Genoa “might not be beautiful yet, but we are a team” as their clean sheet record is at risk against Juventus.

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“The Winter break was really necessary, as the season started in July and there have been a lot of games. From the test results we’ve seen, it looks as if our players have continued their training schedule,” smiled the Coach in his Press conference.

“The way you get points in Turin is with character, by putting in a great performance with hard work, using a team ethic.”

These sides met last month in the Coppa Italia, albeit with revamped line-ups, and Juventus emerged 2-0 winners with Paulo Dybala on target, but the Argentine is out injured.

“I think of the XI Juventus started against us in the Coppa Italia, 10 of them were internationals. The Bianconeri have a world class squad, so one or two missing makes little difference. Objectively, Juve are a tough nut to crack for anyone.”

Giuseppe Rossi had “a slight muscular issue in the femoral bicep, but he’s ready to play, it’s nothing major. He needs to train regularly and put minutes in his legs. I see him doing better every day and watching him in training is a pleasure.”

Ervin Zukanovic is suspended, so Santiago Gentiletti is expected to step in to a defence that has kept a club record four consecutive clean sheets.

“We might not be beautiful yet, but we are a team,” continued Ballardini. “We know that we’ve achieved nothing yet, but are very focused on what we do and aware there’s still a long way to go.

“It is very gratifying to work with these lads and see how much they care about Genoa, but we’ve achieved nothing yet.”

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