Club Focus – Juventus – Patience and fortitude conquer all things

They have had to wait for ages but one thing you have to credit Alberto Zaccheroni with is the fact that he has managed to recover the Juventus spirit.


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The Bianconeri team have always been known to be efficient, to score a goal and to defend like their lives depended on it. Furthermore, they were recognised to be the big team that were more than willing to exploit the mistakes of the opposition. If the opposition committed an error, Juventus were always the side that would capitalise and Diego’s first goal against Bologna on Sunday sealed Juve’s recovery back to past notoriety.

The Bianconeri certainly suffered and defended for much of the second half in order to hold on to the three points against Bologna that would catapult them back into fourth place. Their willingness to hang on, their efficiency in front of goal and their renewed confidence are a joy to witness despite the stomach lunges that accompany the fans having to watch the games. If the Old Lady is only capable of allowing herself to not be pinned back for such long periods of time and allow for fewer nervous moments then we can truly say that Juventus is back.

Of course much of the credit belongs to Alessandro Del Piero. The aged star has managed to produce the magic to lift this team out of their funk and renew their ambitions for the season. He has single-handedly produced award winning crosses, allowed Antonio Candreva his first goal for Juve and permitted Amauri a little time off criticism. Despite his performances, one cannot help but feel sad that this team, and so many millions of pounds later, still depend on their aging icon to deliver the goods in order for the squad to survive. Considering his age and match fitness, Zac will not be able to depend on the legend to play each and every game. Without him, Juve is missing the spark and arrangements must be made so that the club learns how to cope without their Captain. Without Del Piero on the scene, it is evident that the team lacks the necessary creativity to score goals. It appears that much of the creative responsibility lies on Diego’s shoulders and he seems to cope that much better when he has help on either side. As such and for the sake of squad rotation, it would be great if we could see a different formation should the Captain be unavailable and perhaps then Juve can pack more punch in attack. By playing 4-2-3-1 then perhaps the Old Lady will finally have a worthy attack capable of dominating the game a little more. Too often in the game against Bologna the Bianconeri were forced to defend deep and the attack was barely capable of tiring out the opposition. The only reason Juve are still managing to win is because they appear to have finally learnt the art of efficiency. If they get three shots on goal, it is highly likely that Juventus will manage to score two out of these chances. The only problem is trying to create the opportunities.

Candreva has begun to prove his ability to play further up field and with this different formation then perhaps even the likes of Sebastian Giovinco will be given the chance to have a run around the field. With Mauro Camoranesi back to fitness, it would be great to have proven talent back on and he never fails to create that spark to move Juve forward. The 3-5-2 has proved to be an effective formation and the fact that Paolo De Ceglie has been selected to play means that Zac is aware of the strengths of his team. Yes despite its efficiency, the formation is still very defensive and is very tiring as it requires the wingers to work twice as hard by defending and creating attacks. In Europe, as we saw against Ajax, it is a very difficult formation to play as the wingers Juve currently deploy are neither fast nor energetic enough to cope with the demands of these tactics. In Serie A, because the tempo is much slower, Zac is able to use it to great effect but it would be interesting to see how flexible the Coach is with his ideas.

Juventus still have a lot more work to do. Despite the results, they are still playing poorly, they have just mastered the basics and it will be interesting to see how far they get. However, Zac deserves to be applauded for having found a way to restore confidence, for getting the likes of Felipe Melo to put in noteworthy displays and for banishing Fabio Grosso to the bench. But can he maintain continuity and rotate the squad effectively? If he manages a win in the next two games then he will certainly hold the key to the heart of the Juve tifosi.

Juventus Club Focus 2009/10

Week 1


Great expectations
– August 21, 2009

Week 2


When in Rome
– August 28, 2009


The decline and fall of the Roman Empire
– September 1, 2009


World Champions – One in, one out, one remembered
– September 4, 2009

International week (Georgia-Italy, Italy-Bulgaria)


Children should be seen, not heard
– September 7, 2009

Week 3


Diego lost to injury in victorious Roman repeat
– September 15, 2009


The reserves exposed
– September 18, 2009

Week 4


Transforming the formation
– September 23, 2009

Week 5


The cruel blow of lady injustice
– September 25, 2009

Week 6


Haunted by the ghost of last year’s defence
– September 29, 2009


We’re meant to be happy with one point?
– October 2, 2009

Week 7


Is it now time to be negative?
– October 6, 2009


Ferrara: public enemy #1
– October 9, 2009


Bad or just misunderstood?
– October 13, 2009


Let the bitterness commence
– October 16, 2009

Week 8


Oh Ferrara, will you ever learn?
– October 20, 2009


Ferrara, thank you for listening
– October 23, 2009

Week 9


Sampdoria will provide the real test
– October 27, 2009


Introducing the real Juve
– October 30, 2009

Week 11


Why are we not surprised?
– November 3, 2009


The many faces of Juve
– November 6, 2009

Week 12


A team of hyperboles
– November 10, 2009

Week 13


And we’re back
– November 20, 2009


Del Piero returns as subordinate players give encouraging displays
– November 24, 2009


Failure reverberates throughout the club
– November 24, 2009

Week 14


Is it all over?
– December 1, 2009

Week 15


Oh Lord, make our enemies ridiculous
– December 4, 2009


Destroy Bayern and we will really start to believe
– December 8, 2009

Week 16


Humiliation is the beginning of sanctification or so they say
– December 11, 2009


Sanctification is going to have to wait
– December 15, 2009

Week 17


Deliver us from disgrace
– December 18, 2009


Failure is not falling down, but refusing to get up
– December 22, 2009

Winter Break


Less talk and more action
– December 29, 2009


Change is all we wanted for Christmas
– January 5, 2010

Week 18


Does this mean we have to keep him?
– January 8, 2010

Week 19


From the sublime to the ridiculous there is only one step, and Ferrara found it
– January 12, 2010


Maybe just maybe, Juve is back in business
– January 15, 2010

Week 20


We must accept finite disappointment but never lose infinite hope
– January 19, 2010

Week 21


Is John Elkann the real reason for Juventus’ failure?
– January 22, 2010


Another day, another defeat
– January 26, 2010

Week 22


A marginally better Juve
– February 2, 2010

Week 23


Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending
– February 5, 2010


The inescapable failure
– February 9, 2010

Week 24


Starting from stratch
– February 12, 2010


Can they continue winning?
– February 16, 2010

Week 25


A twilight victory
– February 19, 2010


Patience and fortitude conquer all things
– February 23, 2010

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