Thursday August 23 2012
Prandelli backs champions Juventus

Italy boss Cesare Prandelli has given his thoughts on the new Serie A season. “Juventus will be the team to beat.”

The campaign kicks off this weekend and Prandelli, a former midfielder with the Old Lady, is convinced they are firm favourites for the Scudetto.

“I’d put Juventus in pole position,” he told the Corriere dello Sport on Thursday. “They will be the side to beat.

“Firstly, because they are coming off the back of an extraordinary season. Secondly, because they want to confirm themselves and prove a point at the European level.”

Although the Turin giants are expected to do well, Prandelli is looking forward to seeing what sort of challenge Roma put up after the appointment of Zdenek Zeman.

“I’m intrigued by the Roma project which has been handed to Zeman, a Coach who focuses on the quality of play and offensive football,” he added. “I also like the idea of this new Fiorentina led by Vincenzo Montella.”

Prandelli was optimistic too that the two Milan clubs could impress despite some mass changes, while he backed Napoli to be up there.

“Milan have changed a lot, but they are counting on interesting players like Stephan El Shaarawy. You’ll see Massimiliano Allegri’s hand.

“Inter will count on the pride of the squad and the enthusiasm of boss Andrea Stramaccioni. They’ve made some well considered decisions which means they have precise ideas led by the Coach.

“Napoli are now an expert side that will fight to win. Coach Walter Mazzarri will have the same qualities which he has been able to transmit in these years.”

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