Andrea Pirlo is considered to be one of the calmest men in football. If you don’t believe us, then check out some of the internet memes that mocks his ice-cold reactions.
So if you think that a cozy meeting between his employer and the man who is tipped to replace him would be enough to give the maestro sleepless nights, think again.
Whilst the Miami meeting between Juventus president Andrea Agnelli and the club’s former manager Max Allegri was the talk of the town during the last few days, the current Bianconeri boss was unfazed by the situation.
After a string of negative results, Pirlo’s job is on the brink, and a defeat against Napoli on Wednesday could be enough to spell the end of his tenure at the club.
And yet, the 41-year-old seemed to be calm and confident as ever during his pre-match press conference.
“It will be an important match for the table,” Pirlo said at the conference as translated by Football Italia. “Napoli are experiencing a positive period.
“We want to play the game and try to score the points. I expect an open match and I hope it will be a great one.
“Szczesny is confirmed because after a bad performance, there’s always the desire for redemption. As for Cuadrado, we are trying some solutions, he could play high or low.”
Juventus will enter the match short on options, especially after three of their players – Merih Demiral, Leonardo Bonucci and Federico Bernardeschi – tested positive for Covid-19.
“We respect the protocol as always and we are in tune with what the ASL says,” he added. “We will present ourselves as we have always done.
“I’m always in contact with my players. I like to talk to them before and after training, I feel great confidence.
“The players follow me, they want revenge and they are the first to be sad about the situation.”
Paulo Dybala, Weston McKennie and Arthur Melo have returned to training after being suspended by the club ahead of the match against Torino last weekend.
“Paulo is fine, he has trained with the group and has resumed kicking the ball,” he said. “He is back at my disposal and I hope to have him ready to play tomorrow.
“It’s normal that he doesn’t have 90 minutes in his legs, but having him available for us again means a lot.
“I also spoke with [Dejan] Kulusevski yesterday, and I reassured him because mistakes happen. He needs to keep his head up, everyone has faith in him.
“[Alvaro] Morata has not scored for a few games, but we aren’t worried, he’s important for us also in the build-up.”
Pirlo confirmed he was aware of the meeting between Agnelli and Allegri, as the president told him about it beforehand.
“I have daily contact with the President, we always tell each other all the things that happen,” Pirlo said. “I was aware of it (the meeting between Agnelli and Allegri), then it’s normal that it’s up to me to prove that I can be the coach for next season.
“I didn’t expect such a difficult year between matches and injuries,” he continued. “With this international calendar there has been an accumulation of commitments that have led to this being such a special year that we shouldn’t repeat.
“This year, a lot has happened that will help me grow and from here we will start again.” concluded Pirlo.