Saturday May 1 2021
Juric: 'Verona better last season'

Ivan Juric insists Verona gifted a draw to Spezia with ‘serious errors you cannot see in Serie A’ and they ‘had better players last season.’

Hellas had taken the lead through an Eddie Salcedo header, but after wasting several opportunities and hitting the woodwork twice, Riccardo Saponara came off the bench to equalise.

“We made serious errors that you cannot see in Serie A. We created so many chances, but gifted it with errors on the long ball, on the counter-attack, on everything. It’s not possible at this level,” Juric told Sky Sport Italia.

“I gave Salcedo his debut at 15 at Genoa. He’s had ups and downs, but if he stays sharp and hungry, he can become a fine player. He’s a little unusual for a forward, as he’s not really a centre-forward or a support striker. He intrigues me, though, and knows how to time a run. If he continues like this, he can become a striker who scores 15 per season.

“You can’t teach that sort of instinct, you either have it or you don’t, and he has it.

“On the other hand, today we saw Ivan Ilic come off the bench and just did not get into the game at all. He made six or seven errors, not just on the goals. I know he’s 19 and new to Serie A, but he had a really bad day.”

Verona are in ninth place and for a while were in the running for European qualification, despite Juric complaining that the squad had been weakened.

“I’ll be honest, I had more problems this season than last year. We changed a great deal, we had better players last season. For example, Magnani is only now starting to become truly interesting, but he had a lot of ups and downs throughout the year.

“Losing players like Pessina, Borini, Verre, Amrabat, Kumbulla, Rrahmani, Pazzini and others was not easy. Fortunately, some others like Zaccagni and Faraoni did better than last season and we were able to balance it out.

“The lads worked so hard and I am very happy.”