Tuesday February 9 2021
Pirlo: 'I had planned to reach the Final'

Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo doesn’t mind being compared to Max Allegri and said he ‘planned’ to reach the Coppa Italia Final.

The Old Lady are through to the Coppa Italia Final with a 0-0 draw against Inter in the second leg and thus qualified thanks to a 2-1 win in Milan last week.

Pirlo admitted he was hoping to reach the milestone in his first season at the helm.

“I hoped so, as a debutant it was my plan to win a Supercoppa, to reach the Final of the Coppa Italia and the last 16 of the Champions League,” he told Rai1 after the match.

“As a player it was easier, it ended after the game. As a coach, you have to think about the next game immediately, you have to think for 30 different heads.

“But we haven’t achieved anything yet, now we’ll rest and prepare for Saturday’s match.”

The defence did a great job to keep out Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez.

“I have always said that I’m lucky to have four very good centre-backs,” Pirlo continued. “They are adapting to our way of defending and are improving.

“Not only Giorgio’s [Chiellini] return, the others are doing very well and I’m happy about this.”

The new coach was compared to Massimiliano Allegri after the match and was pleased with the comment.

“It’s nice to hear,” he said. “If I have to win what he won, you can also call med Allegrian.

“Every match is different and we prepare in a different way.

“Inter have almost no shots on goal and we had opportunities, we are very satisfied.

“Since the beginning of the season we have been defending with 4-4-2 but we play in a totally different way.

“Based on how our opponents come to pick us up, we decide on how to get out, it’s only the defence that remains 4-4-2.”

Alvaro Morata and Paulo Dybala were not involved tonight and Pirlo was asked if he believes he can play all of them, including Cristiano Ronaldo.

“I hope to have them available, from the start I haven’t had them available at the same time.

“Morata had a fever, Dybala still struggles with knee problems. When we have all three at our disposal, we hope to find a solution because it would increase our quality.”