Dawn of a new era at Juventus. Looks like another club legend is set to take center stage at the club he once played for. This time its the former Juventus and AC Milan midfielder, Andrea Pirlo. The 2006 World Cup winner has replaced the outgoing Maurizio Sarri as the new manager of Juventus, following the club’s elimination in RO16 of the UEFA Champions League.
Today’s choice is based on the belief that Pirlo has what it takes to lead from his debut on the bench, an expert and talented squad to pursue new successes.Juventus.com
Even though the Juve fans have had consistent success in their Serie A campaigns, a win at the European stage is something that they are keen to achieve. They brought in the greatest player in Champions League history, Cristiano Ronaldo to do that. However, even that is proving to be unsuccessful. So is it down to their management? This is their 3rd manager in as many seasons. Most importantly, it is Andrea Pirlo, whose only association with the club is during his playing days. He was named the coach of the B team only 9 days prior to his appointment as manager of the first team. However, the fans can be optimistic that the new appointment can be influential and more exciting than the previous regimes.
We tend to look into the way Juventus could line up under their new manager.
Maurizio Sarri was unable to create a defensive structure for his attackers to play a fluid style of play which he craves. Under Pirlo, we may see improvement in this department. Alex Sandro will be the LB. Georgio Chiellini will be set to take his position as the LCB. He played very few games last season due to his long-term injury. Mathias De Ligt is one player that would try to improve on his debut season at Juventus.
After a remarkable season at Ajax which saw him lead the young group of players to the Champions League semi-finals, the Juventus fans expected him to carry the same kind of form in Italy. However, inconsistency hampered his performances. Andrea Pirlo may prove to be a breath of fresh air for his performances. Juan Cuadrado was the only shining light in the back 4 last season. This will be enough to keep him in the team this season.
Juventus usually line up with their traditional 3-man midfield. Juventus agreed on a swap deal with Barcelona that saw Arthur join the Italian club with Miralem Pjanic going the other way. We can definitely see him slotting into the B2B midfield position.
Despite moving on Sami Khedira, Pirlo would definitely like to have some experience in the anchor role. He may consider Adrian Rabiot in that role. Aaron Ramsey is a great B2B midfielder who can consistently be a threat in the box as we saw in his days at Arsenal, so we expect him to take the advanced role in midfield 3.
We can take clues from how Pirlo used to play while he was in Juventus, as the DLP or a Deep Lying Playmaker as we explained here in our Midfielder Types Article. His role was basically like that of a quarterback and he would be responsible for setting up Juventus’ tempo throughout the game while Arturo Vidal would bombard forward alongside Paul Pogba.
We think that’s how his midfield will operate as well with Arthur in the ‘Pirlo role’ while both Ramsey and Rabiot attacking further forward.
One of the biggest casualties of Juventus was when they decided to move on Gonzalo Higuain. The Argentine striker has been a hit and miss ever since his move from Napoli.
We expect their talisman Cristiano Ronaldo’s evolution as a player and Paulo Dybala to occupy the wing positions. The search for their striker’s position continues to move along. There have been recent reports of Juventus’ interest in Dzeko and we can see that with the previous departure of Mandzukic who, you can arguably say, Juventus have missed.
However, according to Sky Italia there has been an agreement with Luis Suarez and the Barcelona man is close to arriving at the Italian club this summer. Both of these options make sense for Juve as it would allow for both Ronaldo and Dybala to play off Dzeko/Suarez allowing them more space and more time to create dangerous situations for the opposition.
Of Course these are just mere speculations that we can deduce as we have no idea what Pirlo’s style of football is or If he even has a developed philosophy. We can just take clues from the systems that the great man himself has played under while identifying the kind of players that Juve have.
Its an uncertain time to be a Juventus fan and in some ways its thrilling as well as exciting. We will either see the same Biaconeri that we’ve seen for years to come under Pirlo, or perhaps a team that is much more attack oriented