Sunday December 22 2019
Sarri can learn from Allegri

Maurizio Sarri has been hesitant to use Paulo Dybala, Gonzalo Higuain and Cristiano Ronaldo together, but Emmet Gates thinks he can learn from Max Allegri.

It was interesting to hear former Juventus coach Max Allegri’s comments concerning the obsessive nature with tactics in his native country. Allegri gave an extremely frank interview in which he eschewed the basic ideas of tactics and footballing philosophies. For him, you simply get your best players in their finest physical and mental condition, and put them out on to the field to win. Nothing more, nothing less.

Whilst Allegri’s view is the antithesis to what Maurizio Sarri believes in, it could do the latter no harm to take some stock in what the former is saying: Using your best players usually leads to winning football matches.

Sarri has been exceedingly hesitant to do just that. Whilst Allegri famously shoehorned the cinque stelle (five stars) of Paulo Dybala, Gonzalo Higuain, Mario Mandzukic, Juan Cuadrado and Miralem Pjanic into the starting XI midway through the 2016-17 season as they reached the Champions League final, Sarri hasn’t followed suit. Until this week.

Every time the question of whether Cristiano Ronaldo, Higuain and Dybala could all play together was put to him, Sarri was quick to shoot down the idea, stating they Juve would lose balance.

Sarri has generally picked two of the three, with either Aaron Ramsey or Federico Bernardeschi playing in behind as a No 10. Ramsey has struggled with injuries throughout the season, and has only made five starts, whilst Bernardeschi, try as he might, doesn’t know how best to interpret the role of a trequartista, and looks lost the majority of the time.

As Gigi Buffon noted in the build up to the Italian Super Cup this week, the Bianconeri were winning games by sheer force of will, relying on that combination of knowing how to win ugly and the psychological fear that their name still generates in Serie A.

Juve were struggling to break teams down, despite the huge amount of attacking resources at their disposal. Furthermore, the ‘balance’ Sarri repeatedly used as an excuse not to play Dybala, Higuain and Ronaldo together was barely visible; Juve have only the joint third best defence in the league, with 17 goals conceded. That’s nine more than at this stage last season.

The turning point came in the 3-1 defeat to Lazio at the Stadio Olimpico. Ronaldo and Dybala started with Bernardeschi in behind and whilst Juve completed 200 more passes than their opponents, they weren’t threatening.

All of the possession was in front of the Biancocelesti, easily marshalled and Juve pandered, passing the ball from one side of the pitch to the other. Essentially, what frustrated Chelsea fans in the early days.

Since then, it does seem like Sarri has given in to the Allegri methodology. Juve started the trio together for the first time against Udinese, and whilst admittedly the Zebrette were Serie D levels of pitiful in the first half, Ronaldo, Higuain and Dybala linked up wonderfully.

Against Sampdoria on Wednesday, Sarri kept faith in the trio and was rewarded with two stunning goals from Dybala and Ronaldo, with the latter showing almost inhuman levels of agility to hang in the air and wait for Alex Sandro’s cross.

There is a feeling that the three players all want to play together from the start, Dybala said as much in the aftermath of their 2-0 win against Bayer Leverkusen in the final group game of the Champions League.

Yet it’s one thing to start the trio against Udinese and Samp, it’s quite another to do it in a Champions League quarter final or in the inevitable title decider against Inter next March.

With that being said, it is early days, but if Sarri continues to utilise Dybala, Ronaldo and Higuain from the start and the results remain, why change a good thing? Allegri certainly wouldn’t.

Have your say...
@dennis you are unto something with the way juve play. the trident of dybala-higuain-ronaldo play close together and is very narrow. vs Lazio it almost seem like Lazio had the whole of the field while all of juve attacks were central. when he brought on cuadrado as fullback it gave the attck more width. but there is questions about pjanic defensively, juve is open up to counters with him. it almost seems like it is best for juve to play with 3 strong defensive mids. bentancur,rabiot,matuidi.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 7:35pm
Sarri learn from Allegri ?
Flush your article down the toilet.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 6:53pm
With Allegri leaving I believe it changed the entire transfer market as Pjanic and Dybala were set to leave if he stayed. Sarri has reborn Dybala, but no one is saying it, but I will. Pjanic is over rated. Is not the creator and doesn't cover up defensively. He needs to play further up field and for Juve to have another deep lying midfielder.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 3:11pm
Juve's problem remains the same as it was during Allegri's latter years - an underwhelming midfield. I will be shocked if Juve can win CL with Pjanic as Registra. He's too slow. Ramsey, Can & Rabiot have clearly not worked out. Costa can't stay healthy & Bern. never seems to convince. From the signing, I thought Sarri was in over his head. I lay the blams at the feet of Agnelli, Paratici & Nedved. There is more to building a champion than accumulating talent.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 2:00pm
Yes that’s a Merda fan for you lol. Wants to see somebody’s face and kick it .you ain’t a snake either buddy. Maybe y’all mistook that large piece of Merda for a snake every time you look in the mirror. Either way for a person who’s team is known as MERDA! lolol. You Should be very quiet. Carry on haters .
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 1:42pm
trident but Juve have got to find a way to get Douglas Costa fit and injury free as he is the key to me. 15 minutes here and there is no good, the guy is a monster if used properly. With the trident playing so close together in the middle who is providing the width? De Sciglio, Matuidi and Sandro? Are you kidding me with that? Lots to sort our Sarri.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 1:01pm
Genuine question to Juve fans what is the point of Pjanic? I honestly do not know what his role is? Ppl are rightly calling out Juve's mf for being its weakest link but they have 2 guys of immense quality not doing it at all. Pjanic and Rabiot are the most creative midfielders Juve have, yet are not doing the biz at all. So far Bentancur is d best but like Fede Valverde at Real Madrid you need more than his skillset to win cl though their athleticism and application are faultless. Not sure about
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 12:54pm
@ Tylan

Allegri didn't have Demiral and De Ligt .. Higuain, Ramsey , Rabiot have been added to the squad .. The only lost this season compared to last season is Cancelo .We have scored less and conceded more .Allegri wont lose to Lazio twice in two weeks .. He knows how to at least react
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 12:34pm
I don't think Allegri's Juve was better than this. Last year Juve begun to concede easily, not this year and scoring and being cynical have always been a problematic for juventus for ages. I think the problem is in the middle of the park as Marchisio stated the other day. look at players, Pirlo, Pogba, Vidal, Marchisio, and now have only Pjanic in that level (also out of shape now). Bentancur is so dynamic but he is not that effective in team play. Matuidi is a good athlete that's all.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 11:55am
@serie a, u know snake as i am a interista want to see your face and kick it back to where it started muling.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 10:23am
Defensive issues are huge..conceeding g every game means juve need at least 2 goals to win..rarely do they score more than 2. The old juventus won many fames 1 0...this will be a season with no trophies
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 8:41am
I love the more open juve. I just think Sarri needs to find the right balance. this coach has the personality to winthe c.league. with allegri there was too much detail to organization and movement. in the c.league to win you need flair and be more open to attack. right now I think he needs to find the right balance. if he continues with the trident of Dybala-higuain-Ronaldo. I just think juve needs another workhorse in midfield for this system to work better.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 8:09am
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 5:42am
Sarri's style doesn't seem to suit Juve's corporate image and maybe his coaching methods don't suit the current Juve squad. For me Sarri and Juve never seemed like a likely match, yet I hope they prove me wrong. Maybe more credit should go to Simone Inzaghi. I didn't watch the match but Lazio played 3, 5, 2 which I imagine crowded the midfield stifling Juve's build up to attack. Well done Inzaghi and Lazio.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 4:55am
hmm, still waiting for Sarri ball cause all I see is slow ball or Allegri ball. Pjanic starts the play out from the back slower then a turtle and I guess the rest of the Juve players must be sleeping because there is no movement, no quick passing. The midfield has been garbage for some time and still is.
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 1:41am
Lol settle down haters. You all will still be Losers in the morning and were losers for the past
8 YEARS. 8 yearrrrrrrrrrrrrrsssssssssssss.......
on the 23rd December, 2019 at 1:13am
@Cetateanu' whit that defence and that coach cl will never hapend for juve,they cant defend vs lazio and you expect them to do better vs real,barca and bayern???Even liverpool will trash Juve atm and thats if they even manage to get past Lyon
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 10:44pm
Just sarriout as soon as possible.If you cant get Pep reapoint Allegri or take pochetino.This sarriball is geting out of hand.Noone gi8ves a damn for halland ,next ronldo or next messi just buy us next dani alves,zidane, delpiero, canavaro and they will win it all for you
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 8:43pm
Water under the bridge... Lazio won, they played better, chapeau! Juventus still lacking some midfield players, I bet we wouldn't lost this game with Arturo Vidal in our squad, wish Paratici read this;) Anyway, respect for Lazio, they are the second team in the last decade in terms of trophies from Italy, after Juventus. As for Juve... way to go in Champions League. We only need one midfielder and one striker.
Fino Alla Fine!
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 7:52pm
Max was a brilliant successful manager and Sarri a hopeless old failure. If Max was manager Juve would be flying home with the trophy now. With Sarri it is just another humiliation. Juve did an incredibly stupid thibg sacking Max and an even more stupid one in giving the job to someone whose managerial record is...well, rubbish. Sarri should stick to smoking - the only thing he knows how to do.
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 6:58pm
If Max was manager Juve would be flying home with the trophy in a couple of hours. Juve did an incredibly stupid thing - sacking a brilliantly successful manager for a hopeless old failure. Stupidity is always punished - in life and in football. The best thing that could happen to Juve is to lose a couple more games quickly and for Sarri to be sacked.
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 6:54pm
What milan is doing??? I expected this as if kessie is the man for pulling the strinhs or when calhanogolu is a winger then suso must be the leader of devastation!!!
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 3:17pm
@Anon,, You are focasing on a spectator wherein the whole is about a past agenda : comparing to sarri to allegti's. Which one is bigger stupid??
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 12:09pm
"Juve were struggling to break teams down, despite the huge amount of attacking resources at their disposal"

This is Allegri's heritage, not Sarri's fault. Allegri has changed almost all player to have "defend-first" mentality and taught them to play lazy and rely only on luck. You think its easy to change that kind of mentality? Had he still around this season, he will re-deploy CR7 to wing back as Cuadrado's reserve, sell Dybala to Everton and use Demiral + de Ligt to get Bruno Alves.
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 11:46am
Spirit willy

Your level of stupidity will contribute to ppl never reading these blogs again.

Also No. sarri does not need to learn anything from allegri.
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 10:53am
Allegri was what alex ferguson was to man utd. Absolute heart&soul of juve much than conte and knew all well how to operate juve to win league every year also reach steps in cl. Sarri has to opt for a different route. Because people complained it look like allegris juve whereas master is not in the boat! He needs to tenf lighter thinking its not juve rather its napoli or empoli. Use rugani tweak here and there often to give juve a brighter and vibrant look. Thank You.
on the 22nd December, 2019 at 9:55am

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