Hellas Verona coach Ivan Juric refused to criticise Kevin Lasagna after two big misses in the 2-2 draw with Genoa. ‘I get angry at other players.’
His team had been leading twice at Marassi, but were pegged back by Eldor Shomurodov and Milan Badelj strikes.
“It’s disappointing for the lads, as they did so well with a lot of difficulties, as we had to move some players around to fill the gaps,” Juric told Sky Sport Italia.
“They gave absolutely everything, that can happen in football and I think they deserved to win.”
Lasagna wasted two massive opportunities when clear on goal, one firing wide and the other hitting the upright.
“As long as he keeps working like that, he won’t be criticised by me. When he hits the woodwork, that’s not a lack of focus, that’s just bad luck. I get angry with players who don’t do everything they are supposed to.
“Lasagna just has to stay calm and keep going. We are a club that cannot afford top stars, so we sign players with some issues, even psychological ones, then try to cuddle, love and console them until they can really flourish to give their best.
“We got into a bit of a mess at the end with players who had cramp. It was our header, we cleared it badly, these are details. We are a little bit still under construction and slightly naïve.”
Juric was asked if he feels the current Hellas Verona squad is already at the level or even better than last season’s team.
“I’ll be honest, I don’t think we’re at the right level yet. We’ve improved in some areas, but there are some players who need to improve a lot. We’re better than we were, for instance Mattia Zaccagni and Antonin Barak, players with football intelligence that I really like.
“I have certainly improved too! I am calmer now, wiser, it’s an atmosphere where I can concentrate on my job and not have to go into battle on various other issues. I feel sharp.”
When questioned on if Juric would be capable of dealing with top stars, he seemed content with his lot.
“Maybe it is my focus as a coach, to improve players and work on their strengths and weaknesses. I don’t mind that.”