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ALVISE CAGNAZZO: Juventus are in disarray a week before the start of the Serie A season

brittle. That’s the best word to describe Juventus when they were split by Atletico Madrid last week in their last friendly of the season.

Their former striker Alvaro Morata scored a hat-trick against them as the Spanish side won 4-0, exposing deep problems at the core of Max Allegri’s squad.

The problems Juventus face are difficult to solve unless the club sanctions further investments in the squad. Atletico’s beating was a slap in the face for the players and it will only heighten fears for this side following the loss of greats Paulo Dybala and Giorgio Chiellini this summer.

Alvaro Morata scored a hat-trick when Atlético Madrid defeated Juventus 4-0 in a friendly on Sunday

Alvaro Morata scored a hat-trick when Atlético Madrid defeated Juventus 4-0 in a friendly on Sunday

Two years have passed since their last Scudetto triumph, with rivals Inter and AC Milan sneaking up on them with their own Serie A wins. Both Milan outfits have a much stronger structure than Juventus, who are at risk of being left behind.

This team is too bad to be true and it needs serious reinforcement in the market – the problems are very serious and it is unclear if Juventus will get the support they need to bring in more players.

fitness problems

The whole team looks tired and the exercises of muscle coach Simone Folletti seem to cause problems. Even Angel Di Maria, a dynamic and lean player, suffered in the Atletico match which ended with just one shot from Juventus on target. None of the players have shown that they are even 80 percent of the way to full fitness.

The only saving grace of the friendly was that it was played behind closed doors at Juventus’ training center so that they at least avoided the deafening whistles of the fans full-time.

Max Allegri has plenty of problems to solve for Juventus' Serie A opener against Sassuolo

Max Allegri has plenty of problems to solve for Juventus' Serie A opener against Sassuolo

Max Allegri has plenty of problems to solve for Juventus’ Serie A opener against Sassuolo

Nevertheless, the problems remain and now a lot of concentration will be needed to avoid a similar collapse in their first Serie A game against Sassuolo next week.

Allegri is deeply concerned that his team’s struggles cannot be attributed solely to jet lag from their pre-season tour. There are many problems and he will have to try to solve them with the help of the transfer market.

While the sale of Adrien Rabiot to Manchester United may solve one problem in the form of taking one disruptive influence off the books, there is still a great need for extra quality in the squad.

Filip Kostic is definitely the best cheap solution that could open up new tactical scenarios like 4-2-3-1 as an alternative to 4-3-3. The Serbian winger knows Dusan Vlahovic very well and will be able to help him through the drought of his current goal.

Vlahovic is currently isolated from the rest of the team. The striker, who signed Juventus for £62 million from Fiorentina in January, is often ousted by opposition defenders.

He became nervous against Atlético Madrid and his performance suffered. To be at his best, he needs more service.

Dusan Vlahovic, a £62million arrival in January, is currently isolated as a lone striker in the team

Dusan Vlahovic, a £62million arrival in January, is currently isolated as a lone striker in the team

Dusan Vlahovic, a £62million arrival in January, is currently isolated as a lone striker in the team

Leonardo Bonucci loses his touch

The defender who mocked English fans for talking about ‘pastasciutta’ (‘eat more pasta’) after Italy won Euro 2020 appears to have eaten too much pasta himself.

In the pre-season, Bonucci was slow and even clumsy with the ball, causing the entire defense to struggle. His long-distance passing now seems to be a distant memory and he seems to be heading towards the sunset of his career as a top player.

Younger centre-backs Federico Gatti and Bremer have both been encouraging and Juventus may be better off without Bonucci as the starter.

The 35-year-old was always helped by playing together with Andrea Barzagli and Giorgio Chiellini, but both have now left Turin – essentially breaking the spell that made Bonucci a top-tier player.

35-year-old Leonardo Bonucci looked like a shadow of his former self during the prep

35-year-old Leonardo Bonucci looked like a shadow of his former self during the prep

35-year-old Leonardo Bonucci looked like a shadow of his former self during the prep

Bonucci and Bremer have the potential to become one of the best partnerships in Serie A, but that will ultimately depend on the fitness and stamina of the Juve captain.

Last season Bonucci was sidelined with several muscle injuries and fans think he is way past his physical peak.

Other Defensive Flaws

While most top clubs use their defense to launch attacks, Juventus use their backline solely to create a wall for opponents.

The conceding four goals against Atletico showed that there are many tactical issues to be resolved before their season opener.

One of the main problems is that the defense is too low and full for goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny. Juventus suffer from teams running on them – a huge problem given the athleticism of many teams playing in Europe.

Alex Sandro and Danilo do not have the strength to make crosses and assists. Every pass they make is in a straight line or back to Bonucci. It’s as if all other roads are blocked or they can’t communicate with other realms.

Left-back Alex Sandro was a particularly weak link in that unfortunate loss to Atlético Madrid

Left-back Alex Sandro was a particularly weak link in that unfortunate loss to Atlético Madrid

Left-back Alex Sandro was a particularly weak link in that unfortunate loss to Atlético Madrid

Alex Sandro was a particularly weak link in that unfortunate loss to Atletico. He played as a supporter who was asked to go to the field from the stands.

Throughout the match, he was given a scorching time from Atletico’s Nahuel Molina. He showed that he has real concentration problems and that the left side looks vulnerable to Juventus.

Mattia De Sciglio and Luca Pellegrini would certainly have delivered better attacking performances if they had started and it should not be ruled out that Allegri will soon be replacing his fullbacks.

Moise Kean has gone from elegant to clumsy

Moise Kean is at serious risk of becoming the new bad boy of Italian football and taking the crown from Mario Balotelli. Kean was not included in the roster against Atletico by Allegri after showing up late for the pre-match meeting, a decision endorsed by the club.

Moise Kean did not play against Atletico after showing up late for the pre-match meeting

Moise Kean did not play against Atletico after showing up late for the pre-match meeting

Moise Kean did not play against Atletico after showing up late for the pre-match meeting

It seems strange that the attacker does not want to impress after several mediocre performances last season. All of Kean’s attitudes are childish and his behavior is immature, which could hurt the entire Juventus team.

Hopes were high for the 22-year-old after scoring twice in the friendly against Barcelona, ​​but his actions before the game against Atlético were shameful. He has gone from an elegant player to an uneasy appearance for Juventus.

Juventus are desperate for an understudy to Vlahovic, but Kean has missed another career opportunity to prove he is a top player and has instead forced the club to return to the transfer market.

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