Wednesday December 7 2011
Conte will make Juve changes

Juventus boss Antonio Conte has confirmed that he’ll rest numerous first team players in Thursday’s Coppa Italia tie against Bologna.

Although the tactician has admitted that winning the trophy is important, he will give some of Juve’s reserves a chance to shine at Juventus Stadium.

“It’s inevitable that I have some decisions to make,” Conte stated in a media conference this afternoon.

“I want to give some space to those who haven’t had a lot of opportunities to play so far. I want some positive responses from those players who are training hard.

“There are some roles where I will need to decide which alternatives to use – especially on the flanks.

“A few of the squad haven’t had the pleasure to play and this will be an opportunity for them.”

Milos Krasic is expected to return to the team, while Emanuele Giaccherini and Marcelo Estigarribia could be used in more central midfield positions.

Marco Storari will replace Gigi Buffon in goal, but it’s unclear whether Alex Del Piero will be allowed to feature after his eight stitches at the weekend.

“Storari will start the game,” continued the former Siena boss. “He’ll be the first choice goalkeeper in the Coppa Italia this season.

“I saw Del Piero yesterday. He has quite an important cut on his face and I don’t know if he could play tomorrow. He wants to, but it will be up to the doctors.”

Juve, despite the expected changes, will start the Cup game as favourites, but Conte isn’t expecting an easy tie.

“The objective is to get through. I want the maximum effort from everybody. I want to see if we can have the same rhythm as we have in the championship.

“Our aim is to win every competition that we enter, but Bologna won’t be coming to Turin to become a sacrificial lamb.

“They will come here with the intention of going through. We’ll see who is the best.”