Friday August 10 2012
Marotta confirms Conte stays

Beppe Marotta has reiterated Juventus’ support for Antonio Conte in his fight against a 10-month ban, declaring that his position has never been in doubt.

The Coach has been hit with an initial touchline ban until June 9, 2013 for his alleged role played in the betting scandal.

The confirmation of this initial penalty for the tactician came alongside the better news that players Leonardo Bonucci and Simone Pepe would not be facing similar punishments for their alleged involvement.

“At this moment our feelings are bittersweet,” reflected director general Marotta, opening Juve’s Press conference before the weekend’s Super Cup clash with Napoli. Sitting next to him was Gianluigi Buffon and Massimo Carrera, who will take the bench in place of Conte on Saturday.

“For Bonucci and Pepe the acquittal was like the liberation of a nightmare. I have accompanied them during the trial in Rome and I saw two guys who were disorientated, in an environment that had nothing to do with their profession. We thank their lawyers who did well in their defence.

“With regard Conte, we are convinced at the strangeness of the facts we are contesting, in light of the documents and expertise we have put forward.

“There are two other sets of proceedings, for which we are already at work and in which we hope will emerge his innocence. We are faced with sports law and an experience that we must take important signs from, especially if we consider teams as businesses that can receive substantial financial damages when players or Coaches are hit in this way.

“In the case of Conte, we are faced with a situation where one person says one thing in contrary to another 23 people. A situation where our Coach is charged.”

Marotta continued by insisting that Conte will remain in his position as Juventus Coach, even if he spends the entirety of next term in the stands.

“Antonio was the main architect of winning the League and, even considering the fact that the modern role of the Coach is primarily to manage his group, we are convinced that the work to take place during the week is still fundamental.

“The game will be a bit like an examination for a student, who must study in the days before so as to pass.

“Antonio is suffering in this battle where he has another obstacle to now overcome. We never thought about a change of Coach, though, just as the idea for him to resign has never occurred.

“He is the manager of a group that recognises him as a leader, whilst Juventus are champions and we are convinced that will make up for his absence.”