Friday, July 31, 2009

Chiellini’s Charge

"Playing against great champions is always nice, especially against those who play abroad, because you are curious to know how you measure up". Giorgio Chiellini is charged-up and ready for Real Madrid. For a fighter like him, the match against the phenomenal merengues is even more stimulating:

"Real is made up of great champions but it won’t be easy for them either to immediately find an identity and perhaps it will not be possible for all of them to play together. We must maintain our identity of a team that we are trying to improve".

Asked about the value of Kakà and Cristiano Ronaldo with the Brazilian being paid much less Giorgio is objective:

"I think the difference lies in the fact that it was necessary for Milan to sell the player whereas Manchester United would only give up Cristiano Ronaldo at an irrefutable price. Saying who is better whether it is Kakà, Ronaldo or Messi is impossible. Objectively Kakà is not less valuable then Ronaldo or Ibrahimovic. Diego? In recent years he improved a lot. He showed he is capable of great numbers and Juventus can be his launching pad in becoming like them".
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Ferrara: "Friendly Matches Do Not Exist"

The Peace Cup is about to enter its most exciting part: On Friday Juventus and Real Madrid will play for access to the final of the tournament and expectations are on the rise:

"We will try to win – began Ciro Ferrara during the eve’s press conference – It is of great satisfaction being able to play such great matches, even though it is not the Champions League. When there are such matches, during a preparatory period with many important novelties, there is great curiosity to know the real value of the teams. Even though it will not give definite judgments, indications on what must be improved and on the good done up to now can be drawn. We are here to try and win the tournament and if this must be by going past Real, then it is even better".

In such cases one cannot speak of friendly matches and this is true in the eyes of Ferrara: "To me there is no such match as a friendly match. This is the mentality we must have whether the opponent is Real Madrid, Vicenza or Cisco Roma. If you are Juventus and you are striving to become a strong team you must always play to win. In such matches you don’t even need to work on motivation. It is a match between great champions and therefore all want to show their value".

The match against Seongnam which opened the doors to the semi-final for Juventus, already gave useful indications especially withy regards to Diego’s talent and the personality of Felipe Melo:

"It was important for both of them to begin gaining confidence with their mates during the match. It is clear that some players are more fit then others. The intention is to have all in the best condition possible before the start of the championship and therefore it is clear that Diego and Felipe Melo will have to play for longer periods".

For Ferrara the match is a first as a coach but in his past as a player the precedents are quite a few: "I remember Real-Madrid- Napoli (2-0) on my debut in the Champions Cup, played in an empty stadium. At the time I was marking Butrageno...". Apparently El Buitre in the past few days was seen in the hotel were Juventus are staying: "He was here? I didn’t see him, but in reality I didn’t see him neither when he scored in the return match – joked Ferrara – Luckily now things are different and I don’t play anymore…".

With regards to the possible formation against Real, Ferrara did not reveal anything: "we do not want to give any advantages to our opponents. All details are important even in this sort of match. Sometimes it is important to manage the group well because it is only right that all the players feel as if they are protagonists and having the chance of competing for a place. Even other coaches with more experience then me behave in this manner so it isn’t wrong. I announce the formation to the team during the technical meeting before going to the stadium".

No indications are given with regards to the starting eleven but there isn’t much doubt about the scheme to be used: "We will not change our scheme. We will try to play in our manner, knowing that before us we will have a team that is made up of great ball jugglers. We have other characteristics but we are working to keep ball possession as high as possible, even though the Italian teams are used to move forward immediately and seek the goal. It is a sort of culture we carry with us".

"The fact of fielding more offensive elements is not always a guarantee of scoring more goals. You can even have a different type of formation and shoot at goal by means of the midfielders. It is enough to think of Rome who for many years only had Totti in front with midfielders capable of shooting at goal".

Real seems to be a perfect machine following the signings made but Juventus is no less competitive: "Perfect teams do not exist. There are very strong teams but it does not mean they win all their matches. Having spent a lot of money does not always correspond to definite results".

"We lived this at Juventus, when for many years, notwithstanding a careful management, we kept on winning. They invested very much but we feel we can make it. I will not give percentages but I know Juventus can win".

Ferrara wants an aggressive Juventus, capable of spectacular moves but also of concreteness. The coach is not inspired by any team in particular, even though he admits he admires Guardiola’s Barcelona very much:

"Last year they played great football, with all the men moving but I wouldn’t like being quotes as saying that I would like a Juventus similar to Barcelona. I do not want to cite past teams, otherwise one would have to think of too many formations that made history like Napoli or Sacchi’s Milan".

"Remaining in the present day, Barcelona has great quality but even Manchester is a great team. I want a Juuventus capable of maintaining its characteristics of a team that never says die. It will be hard to be as spectacular as Barca and so we will try to be more concrete".

During the press conference, Ferrara is flanked by Giorgio Chiellini and the coach is asked if he intends re-transferring the defender onto the flank:

"I believe that at the moment is one of the strongest central defenders in the world and therefore I do not think I’ll field him as fullback. It could be a solution in a case of emergency, but generally we will be trusting the left side in the hands of important players like Molinaro and De Ceglie without forgetting Brazzo, who can also play in that position".

Finally a thought about Caceres who could soon become a bianconero: "The medical tests went on well and therefore it is probable he will be part of this team. He will be another element to give us a hand. Ariaudo’s future? Well, he is willing to improve and with five central defenders he might find very little space. It could be useful being loaned out to gain experience but even staying could be important. I believe very much in him and we will decide together on what is best".
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Molinaro, 26 Years Of Running. Happy Birthday Cristian. Your wishes On JuventusMember

While awaiting the match against Real Madrid and trying to win the prestigious Peace Cup, Juventus have something to celebrate already. It is a particular event which does not pass unnoticed.

Today, Thursday 30th July 2009, is the 26th birthday of Cristian Molinaro. The defender from Campania has reached this age on the run, just like on the field. Having got back with the group after totally recovering from the problem which halted him last year, he now promises to have another year as protagonist.

The best wishes from Juventus and all the fans go to “Moli”.

Send your birthday wishes to Cristian on
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Ferrara: "Championship Mode Right From The Start"

"The fixtures handed us important matches at the beginning and at the end. It could be dangerous both for us and for our opponents. In any case, it is better to start with two great away games, so we can get into championship mode right from the start. All this without forgetting Chievo who, if I recall correctly, last year managed to play a little joke on us".

This is the way Ciro Ferrara commented the fixtures of the Serie A drawn this afternoon. The start for the bianconeri will be a fiery one: after the first match in Turin against Chievo, Juventus will be playing two away matches (with an international break in between) at the Rome Olimpico – the first against the giallorossi and the other against Lazio:

"In the first few days it will be impossible to see the teams ready – continued Ferrara - it will still be a sort of running-in. The two away matches in Rome are difficult and will see the teams still not one hundred percent there, but this applies to all".

For a great start there is also a great closing. After the match against Inter on the 15th match day, the last match will be against Milan, a match which perhaps would be better to play without having the necessity of winning the 3 points:

"In reality having a difficult match on the last day changes very little – concluded the Juventus coach – I think that consistency drives the team to winning the championship".
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Diego: "Our Objective Is Victory"

The adventure in black and white of Diego Ribas de Cunha could not have a better start. The Brazilian, who made his debut yesterday against Seongnam took control of the game after a few minutes, gave some brilliant prescise passes and topped it all up with a fantastic goal. He definitely lived up to the great expectations: :

"It was a special goal which I hope was the first of many. I think it was a perfect evening for me, because after two months without playing I managed to win and score. I am very happy. Obviously, I still have to improve but I will manage through work".

What struck people most of Diego’s match was the way he clicked nearly perfectly with Vincenzo Iaquinta:

"When we speak of our attackers, we’re speaking of four high level players. With time I will learn how to understand their movements and where they prefer to receive the ball. Our scheme is similar to the one I played in Germany. Yesterday I felt well in that position. This system is perfect for me".

With regards to possible competition with Del Piero, Diego immediately cleared the situation:

"I am not here to compete with Del Piero. I am here to do my job and win myself space. Del Piero is one of the best players in the world and deserves great respect from all. He is a special player. My objective is to win. Personally, I don’t care who takes the free-kicks or who scores".

After having seen Diego at work, more people are convinced about the potential of this Juventus:

"It is one of the strongest teams in the world, part of the elite of football. It can win any trophy and that is why I am here. I feel well here, both with my mates and with the technical staff who are treating me with great affection and I can only improve".

The first objective has already been declared: beating Real in the semi-final and taking the Peace Cup home:

"We are not in the ideal form yet, but the match against Real Madrid will be special as always. We will play to win because our objective is winning the tournament".

The match against Real evokes the Champions League and Diego does not hold back on the subject:

"It is impossible for a team like Juve to take part in a tournament simply to participate. With the investments it made and the players it has it must always try to win. This is our mentality. Everybody is awaiting Juventus and we must be conscious of this. The Champions League is an objective, a difficult one true, but we must work to win it".

He is ambitious but with his feet firmly on the ground. Diego wants to help Juventus to win but is not seeking personal success:

"The golden ball is not one of my objectives. Those are things that come slowly. A career is made up of many steps and I want to concentrate on the first: playing well, helping Juventus and winning. The world cup is another great objective of mine. Up to now I have never taken part in one, but to do so I have to do well with Juventus and I am 100% concentrated on this. We must try to win and the rest will follow by default".
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