Monday March 25 2019
Pirlo: Icardi lost more, Juve...

Andrea Pirlo claims Mauro Icardi has lost more than Inter and that everything suggests it could be Juventus’ year in the Champions League.

Napoli, Inter and Milan occupy the three spots below Juventus in Serie A with only 10 rounds of fixtures left, and Pirlo expects the top four to stay as it is.

“The same three today, even though Lazio are doing well right now,” explained the former Italy midfielder to Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Napoli are holding their own because they were already strong. Inter could’ve done more but slowed down at certain decisive moments, had injuries and then there was the Icardi saga.

“Roma have been a bit disappointing: after the Champions League semi-final last season, they were expected at least show signs of growth in Italy.

“To rejuvenate, they’ve had to forget that experience so they can continue the conversation that’s been started.”

Pirlo then had his say on the Icardi saga at Inter, Milan’s progress under Gennaro Gattuso and whether Juve could finally win the Champions League.

“Inter are still there,” he added.

“Those who don’t play lose value: if Icardi had still been frozen out, who would’ve wanted him? Inter have another striker: how will Icardi come back after being out for so long?

“I expected defensive organisation from Gattuso, knowing how to be fiercely focused on his team.

“I didn’t expect this desire to be translated into play and be nice to watch, but Rino studied. He went beyond the gritty label he had as a player: Coaches aren’t always like when they were players.

“You can come back when you’re strong, prepare for a game to the last detail and completely change your mindset.

“Juve weren’t Juve in Madrid, they just needed to believe in themselves. There’s almost always a match that acts as a turning point.

“In the year you win a Champions League, there are incidents that make you understand that it’ll be your year.

“In Juve’s case, that perfect match, having eliminated the team hosting the Final, and Real’s exit…”