Saturday, 9 January 2021

Pirlo insists Juventus shouldn’t be considered as favourites to win Serie A


Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo insists the defending Serie A champions shouldn’t be considered favourites to retain the league title they have clinched for the last nine years, despite ending AC Milan’s unbeaten run.

Pirlo’s side put in an impressive performance on Wednesday to win 3-1 at the San Siro and halt table-topping Milan’s 27-match streak without defeat in the league.

But the 41-year-old underlined that beating Sassuolo in their next game on Sunday is every bit as important as his side’s victory over Milan.

"Whoever is top is always the team to beat, at the moment that’s Milan," Pirlo told a media conference.

"We know that we are a team that has won the title for the last nine years and there is pressure to do it again, but I consider the team that is top to be the team to beat.

"It was a great and important victory but if we don’t win tomorrow, it will have been for nothing."

"Every result must be equal for us," he added. "Three points against Sassuolo is the same as against Milan or Barcelona.

"Our desire to get results needs to be the same every Sunday. We need to put together a run of wins and then see where we find ourselves in April."

Sassuolo are enjoying a superb season and travel to Turin one point behind Juventus as they chase a surprise European spot.

Pirlo's preparation for the game was complicated by three of his defenders – Matthijs De Ligt, Alex Sandro and Juan Cuadrado – testing positive for Covid-19 in the space of five days.

"It influences me like all the other coaches," said the coach.

"Every day it can happen and we must go forward, football must go forward, unfortunately this is a part of life for everyone. We’re thinking about our work."

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