Juventus and the future: Allegri’s moves for the attack

Max is trying more offensive solutions to build a championship team. But he will need quality to do without Dybala

Looking back doesn’t help, it can only feed regret for that unfortunate departure, for that match with Inter which went as it went. Looking at the present is an obligation, to manage the advantage in the Champions League race and aim for the Italian Cup. But looking to the future is Juventus’ real task in this championship final, which began with Cagliari. Max Allegri knows that to fight for the next Scudetto he must make the attack more effective, fearful and performing. Today he is stopped at 49 goals, just over one and a half per game. Vlahovic helps and will help, but he must be helped. And to do this, we need to change the general attitude of the team.

The motion

Since the match with Inter in the league (but also in the first half with Villarreal) the bianconeri have changed their attitude on the pitch. Allegri, with his newfound defensive certainties and conviction (thanks to the string of useful results), moved on to the “Dare” phase: 4-2-3-1 against the Nerazzurri 3-5-2 in Cagliari due to the absence of Morata. But beyond the starting lines, other numbers count: for two days Juve has been positioned “higher”, closer to the opponent’s goal, raises the line of defenders and that of pressing, tries to recover balls in the opponent’s half and occupy the trocar more. All with a necessary objective: to increase the number of dangers created, of the shots.

The certainty

The data of the conclusions is growing, even if the aim is still to be recorded. Dusan Vlahovic needed three (one out, one save) before finding the right deviation, at the end of a wrestling match, with some difficult control and a few too many falls, waiting for the referee’s whistles that didn’t arrive. With him the area is occupied, the front reference is sure, now it is a question of being able to free him from shooting, which is complex especially against closed defenses and in small spaces. In the last two races the crosses have increased, in the season below average compared to most of the rivals, but none have made it to a Serbian destination. Vlahovic, however, brought 20 points with 22 goals to his two teams in this Serie A: his weight is clear, just as the growth margins are visible. This year he has already exceeded his record for goals, in the next he will have to find the scoring averages of the purple period in Turin.

The absence

In Cagliari in the absence of Morata for a long time the offensive initiatives were the result solely of plays, often starting from a standstill, by Juan Cuadrado. Paulo Dybala took more than a long time to light up, but when he did, he solved problems. The current offensive turning point cannot be separated from Joya (“he can still give us a lot, between now and the end of the season”, Allegri said). Paulo, however, will not be there next year, which reaffirms the need to find offensive quality on the summer market. Raspadori is clearly not the same type of player, but he can help in the strait, while Zaniolo seems more lethal in the open field snatches. The Church factor must be added to the equation: he will return and last season, with Dybala in the pits, it was often he who pulled the “group”. But it is necessary to expand the pool of “taxpayers” to turnover: Morata’s eight goals in the league are few, Kean’s four will probably push the company to reflect on Moise’s future, who would also have a permanence almost guaranteed by the two-year loan (with obligation to redeem).

The rebus

The fluidity of the attacking phase was born further back, in a midfield that, however, shows no signs of finding a definitive form. Injuries center and decrease choices, but they do not explain everything: Rabiot, after convinced signs of approaching his potential, has returned to miss the appointment with continuity; Arthur does not seem suited to this style of play and certainly does not contribute enough to the creation of scoring chances; even Zakaria, after his triumphal entry into the Juventus world, is showing some growth limits. The Swiss will certainly be good, but he cannot be the man around whom to build the department. In perspective there is Locatelli, now injured, but he too will have to grow in insertions and construction of the shot.

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