Igor Tudor warned his Udinese players that “if you don’t run hard against Atalanta, they’ll tear you to shreds.”
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Gian Piero Gasperini’s side have been struggling a little of late, as they fumbled a 3-0 lead at Lazio to draw 3-3 and were crushed 5-1 midweek by Manchester City.
“To be fair, they did play against one of the best teams in the world…” said Tudor in his press conference.
“I don’t want to just focus on defending against Atalanta, because eventually you will break down. They might be missing Duvan Zapata, but still have Ruslan Malinovskyi, Josip Ilicic, Mario Pasalic, Luis Muriel, etc.
“After the Atalanta game, Pep Guardiola said he picked players who would run hard, because if you don’t run hard against Atalanta, they’ll tear you to shreds.”
It is an intriguing battle between the most prolific team in Serie A this season and the stingiest defence, letting in only six, although Udinese have struggled to score goals too.
“It’s an honour for the lads to have the best defensive record in the league and the credit goes to the whole team. We won’t underestimate the importance of the individuals too, as any error is costly back there, but they remain concentrated throughout.”
Tudor was asked if he’d rather have the best defence or the strongest attack?
“It depends on what brings the most points, whether it’s winning 1-0 or losing 5-4. The points matter, ultimately, but that doesn’t mean we’ll rest on those laurels. We want to improve every aspect of our game.”
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