Saturday March 1 2014
Montella: 'Lazio first, then Juve'

Vincenzo Montella urged Fiorentina to “focus first on Lazio, then we can think about Juventus” in the Europa League.

The Serie A tie kicks off on Sunday at 19.45 GMT, click here for a match preview.

Both sides were in action on Thursday in the Europa League, the Viola sending out Esbjerg 4-2 on aggregate to set up a Round of 16 clash with Juve on March 13 and 20.

“It is now normal for us to play every three days and we have everything it takes to prepare in the best way against Lazio,” said the Coach in his Press conference.

“They really made us suffer a great deal when we met earlier this season, but it’s a very different Lazio now. With Edy Reja at the helm they have found a certain consistency and are eager to do well.
“Is it like a derby for me? No, not anymore,” shrugged the former Roma player and tactician.

Montella will be in the stands with Borja Valero, as both were penalised for furious protests against the referee after their 2-2 draw at Parma.

“It’s the first red card I have ever had as a Coach or a player. I still have to decide where to sit in order to get the best view of the game.

“Borja Valero is a very important player for us, but we must learn to do without him for the time being.”

Remarkably, the Europa League games with Juventus will be around their Serie A fixture, meeting three times in 12 days.

“It is necessary to remain focused on Lazio first, then we can think about Juventus. It’s a fascinating challenge and a difficult one.”