Juventus legend Alessandro Del Piero believes Cristiano Ronaldo’s mentality matches that of the Bianconeri: “to win every game.”
Del Piero spoke with Gazzetta Dello Sport ahead of Juve’s match with Atletico Madrid and offered his own insights on a tough game ahead.
“Atletico vs Juve? It can go either way. Atletico is a strong and compact team, with great quality, especially at home,” he told Gazzetta.
“On the other hand, Juventus is one of the teams that can win the Champions League because it has everything to do so. We’ll have to see.
“I heard Allegri saying that he wants his team to score (vs Atletico) because he knows that if he comes back with a 0-0 it will be a complicated situation. They know how to defend, and if they score in Turin it becomes more difficult. It will be interesting to see.
Talk turned to the title race and the prospect of Juve winning their eighth successive scudetto.
“Other teams tried to reinforce but Juve did so too, and the gap remains big. You can see that the Bianconeri never gave the slightest sensation of not being able to win it. There’s a lot of work for others against a club that raises the bar every year.
“Cristiano? Yes, I expected him to be like this. It was enough to combine his mentality with that of Juve’s, which are the same: to win every game. His integration turned out to be a simple process & he’s doing very well. What’s been said is being verified every week.
“Cristiano goes onto the field with the mentality of wanting to score more than just one goal. However, he also moves a lot for the team & is not only focused on scoring. He plays the role of a #9 perfectly, and is always close to goal where he can exploit his skills.
“Zaniolo? A player who has already shown to have incredible technical and physical qualities. However, the thing that is a pleasant surprise is that he takes the field with a great personality. These are three characteristics that are usually difficult to find in one player.
“Given his age, the potential is great. We have to see where he’ll go or if he’ll stay at Roma, there are some question marks, but as a player he has an incredible future ahead of him. Juve interested? Roma have done well to get him, we’ll see what happens.
Del Piero was pictured meeting with Paulo Dybala, supposedly to discuss their long overdue free-kick challenge
“What did I tell Dybala? Some stuff that will remain a secret. We had coffee and a long discussion. Will he play against Atletico? I don’t know we didn’t speak about that. We had planned to have a meeting some time ago, plus there’s the free-kick challenge which we need to do.”
[Translation from Tarek Khatib]