I gain no pleasure from finding echoes of my own longstanding cynicism emerging from other commentators. For when it comes to Juve, I always want to be proven completely wrong with my repetitive wailing of all that is deflating and worrying. And yet, I do find a positive, in that the blossoming of facing up to the grisly reality of our situation will be noticed by the management. They will not remain with tunnel vision, blinkered to all the rising tide of criticism, for widespread condemnation in the media and amongst the fan base will infect the players and ultimately, impact the business model.
What we have endured as fans since the restart has been a mixture of woeful, predictable and lukewarm. Let’s accommodate the mitigating factors, whilst understanding that these affect every single team, not just Juve.
« We lack sharpness and fitness from the lengthy absence of competitive football and training. We lack form, for the same reasons as we have had no chance to build any momentum. We also lack atmosphere in the stadium, for the fans remain represented by some colours or pictures which do little to improve the almost eerie quietude surrounding what is hoped to be a battle royale on the field fueled by the intensity of tens of thousands in attendance, all roaring and living from second to second, kick to kick, which the players and management feed off. »
It feels rather churlish or haughty to mention our injuries, given the staggering resources in hand and invested in our squad. Although it is also fair to suggest that the absences of Chiellini, Demiral, Higuain and a fit Ramsey is a factor to consider. And now all three left-back options suspended or hobbling.
Still, all the clubs face the same issues. And we should be better equipped than most to deal with adversity.
To see the manager in tears after the thoroughly deserved Coppa defeat was very worrying indeed. These were tears of failure and not finding any hope or determination to grit his fangs, take a deep breath and come out swinging. It was a show of futility. An end of sorts of what has probably been building in Sarri for some time, as he is no fool. He knows this adventure – one he simply had to take when offered the role – has gone terribly wrong.
Most are now, or have been for some time, aware of the tactical stubbornness of our manager. Even now with Danilo idiotically suspended, De Sciglio and Sandro both mangled it is highly unlikely we will see a back three – even though this squad played with a back three for many moons and it would be surely interesting to see how the side balances with Leo able to push up often into the one role at the base of midfield where he has ever looked world class. It will not happen. Not due to the squad proving so well drilled into Sarri’s system that to change the tactics would derail our momentum.
This tactical inflexibility we all knew about before Sarri joined the club. And yet, what appears to have happened is that his philosophy and tactical system has proven a very poor fit indeed for our squad. Even Max, who was rather pragmatic, could see when something was wrong game after game after game, and was able to change things. The conclusion I have of Sarri is that he has no idea whatsoever of any solution, any path forward, other than continuing to flog a dead horse…Which is why I find some of his statements close to bizarre. As another member pointed out of late –
« My problem is the direction:
Sarri, a system coach, was brought in to teach the team play a certain brand of football and win games in style without needing to rely on individual moments of talent/genius (like Allegri). When Sarri uses the lack of individual talent ( dribbling in this case) as an excuse, it shows me, that he most probably either does not know or does not know how to achieve what the management brought him in to do….
As the saying goes… If you do not know the destination, no wind is favorable… »