NEWS
Tuesday March 20 2018
Matuidi: ‘Scudetto will go to the wire’

Juventus midfielder Blaise Matuidi believes the Scudetto race will go down to the wire as “Napoli are having the season of their lives”.

The Bianconeri are a point clear at the top of Serie A, but both teams are setting a furious pace and are likely to crack the 90 point barrier.

“It’s all going well,” Mautidi told Le Figaro.

“After that, as they’ve been telling me since I arrived here, when you’re at Juve you don’t judge things at this point of the season.

“We [the French] often say that you pay the musicians at the end of the dance, and at Juve it’s the same.

“We’re on a really good run and we have to be, because Napoli are having the season of their lives.

“There’s suspense and it’ll go to the wire, it’s exciting for the public and for us too. But nothing has been played yet.”

Matuidi also discussed his adaption in Turin, having previously spent his entire career in France.

“When I arrived I quickly realised that this club has a huge history. You realise when you go to the museum with the number of trophies, or when you go through the training centre - by photos, replicas, all the trophies won, the great players who have played here - the responsibility of wearing this shirt.

“Juve represents an institution that wasn’t born yesterday, so when you’re a player you want to make sure you’re at the level to respect that.

“Nothing is left to chance here, there are I-don’t-know-how-many specialists:  foot, legs, upper body; technical staff, workouts on and off the pitch - they never leave us alone!

“That’s the hallmark here, and if we leave nothing on the pitch it’s because we work like crazy every day.

“There are times when we struggle, when our opponents can take the ascendancy but as we say here: ‘fino alla fine’.

“We fight to the end, and that’s our strength.

“The slogan of this club is ‘vincere’, ‘to win’ and it’s not just there to look pretty.

“In some games, like the double-header with Tottenham, we give the impression that we’re suffering, but it’s in that suffering we get the best from the group.

“Until the end, we want to have the last word.”

The French international was also asked why he decided to leave PSG in the summer.

“Honestly I needed a change of scenery. I had six wonderful years at PSG but I needed another environment, a different culture.

“That’s the challenge I set myself. I won’t say I was comfortable in Paris, but I felt the urge to put myself in danger.

“I could win my first Scudetto with Juve, and maybe even more. Then at the end of my career I could say that I didn’t just win in France.

“It would be rewarding for me and my children, I could look at them and say: ‘look kids, daddy played well in France and Italy’.

“It’s also for them that we tried this adventure abroad. I say ‘we’ because I’m including my wife in this adventure. We thought about and decided everything together.

“My two daughters speak better English and Italian than me because they go to the international school so it’s easier for them.

“They’re gifted, and it’s they who give me lessons. My little boy goes there too, it’s a beautiful thing and it will help them later in life.

“I didn’t have that chance, so it makes me proud that I can give them that.

“My wife and children are the most important thing in my life, it was essential that they feel good in Turin and it’s no secret I feel good on the pitch too.

“It’s not just specific to being a footballer, I imagine if you [the interviewer, Baptiste Desprez] didn’t feel good in your life your work would suffer. It’s the same for me.

“Will I play until I’m 40 then? There are a lot of examples of longevity here! It’s maybe a bit much though, right?

“I have to see if the club still trusts me, the young people push you and you have to be up to it. But I’ll play football for as long as I can.”

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