Andrea Pirlo has defended his Juventus team’s slow start against Spezia, claiming it ‘is normal’ when you’re playing twice a week.

The Old Lady have started slowly all-too often this season, in what has been a jam-packed schedule, and it has cost us a number of points.

The manager is trying to downplay it however, claiming that the team simply has to manage the slow start.

“We didn’t make a brilliant start, which is normal when you’re playing every three days,” Pirlo said after the final whistle (via Juve’s official website).

“We tried to manage the game and also created some chances in the first half. In the second half, thanks to some fresh faces, we were able to be more threatening and change the contest, with the wingers and midfielders making good runs into the box.

“We’re trying to get players back from injury, but nothing is certain. De Ligt also pulled up tonight and we’ll assess him tomorrow. We hope it’s nothing serious. Morata is key for us. He knows how to play as part of this team and attack the space in behind. We now hope he can get back to his best quickly.

The manager then opened up on substitute Federico Bernadeschi, who came off the bench to play as a makeshift full-back, and actually came up with two assists within 10 minutes of coming onto the field.

“As for Bernardeschi, it wasn’t the first time he’s played at full-back. He needs to improve defensively, but he has a very good engine and that’s a position where he can fill in.”

We were still the better side in the opening half, despite having less of the ball, and our makeshift defence remained focus on the job at hand.

It can’t be easy juggling all our injuries at present, and while I was impressed by those who were tasked with the roles, I don’t understand why Dragusin remains on the bench when he is a natural centre-back.

I wouldn’t be shocked if he grew frustrated seeing Alex Sandro at centre-back ahead of him, and we could well be playing a dangerous game with his contract coming to an end this summer.

Is Pirlo telling the youngster that he isn’t deemed ready? Despite the win, should the manager use more of his squad given the demands of the season?