Saturday November 28 2020
Pirlo: 'Juve must read match moments'

Andrea Pirlo insists Juventus ‘haven’t worked out how to read the various moments of the match’ after a 1-1 draw with Benevento.

The Bianconeri were held to their fifth draw of the Serie A season, so if we exclude the game awarded by default against Napoli due to COVID, they’ve won only three out of eight rounds.

Alvaro Morata opened the scoring yet again, but Gaetano Letizia’s volley got Benevento back on track for 1-1.

Morata was then sent off after the final whistle for dissent and will be suspended for at least one game, missing next week’s Derby della Mole with Torino.

“We controlled the first half, had the chances to kill off the game, but still haven’t worked out how to read the various moments of the match,” Pirlo told Sky Sport Italia.

“We had a corner and took it quickly on the stroke of half-time, but we should’ve controlled the situation and held out until the break. It’s not the first time we have conceded just before the break.

“At the end, we got a bit chaotic and lost our cool, we didn’t manage to turn the chances into goals.”

Did Cristiano Ronaldo really need to be left at home or could he at least have been on the bench in Benevento?

“He had a slight problem midweek and wanted to play in the Champions League anyway. After international duty, it was natural he’d need some rest. Ronaldo is an added value, but we must try to play our game even in his absence.

“It happens when you have a lot of players on international duty and also play the Champions League, we’re hardly the only club in this situation.

“Real Madrid were dependent on Ronaldo, he is a catalyst for goals and a focal point for moves, so it’s only to be expected he will be a central figure and many moves go through him.”

Juventus have shown a tendency to drop points against the smaller clubs who defend in numbers.

“We are working on the development of the play. We have one more attacking winger, one who comes from deeper. At times it works, at others it doesn’t.

“Unfortunately, when games get chaotic and messy, we have to play clean, good football and take control of the match. Otherwise we struggle, as we did today and against Crotone.

“We’ve got to learn the moments of the game, when to kill it off and when to control the tempo.”

Pirlo was asked why Dejan Kulusevski has seemingly dropped down the pecking order and onto the bench.

“He is a young player, he can’t play every game. Let’s also not forget it’s not the same to play for Parma and Juventus. There’s a completely different level of responsibility.

“We bought him because we know what he can give, he wasn’t that sharp in recent games, but it’s a growth process.”