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Pirlo on Porto: 'They defends well, Atletico Madrid style'

Tue 16 February 2021 | 16:25

Juventus head coach Andrea Pirlo affirmed Leonardo Bonucci and Paulo Dybala won't play against FC Porto and anticipates a 'complicated' game in Portugal.

The

Champions League

is back, and the Old Lady will face the Portuguese champs in two legs in the last 16 of the tournament. 

Pirlo said Bianconeri should show restraint against the Dragons.

 "It will be a very complicated game, they are a team that defends well," Pirlo said at a press conference. "Very compact, Atletico Madrid style, with two lines of four.

"It will take patience and we can't force the plays because they have good players to counterattack."

Pirlo' fantasies about winning the trophy' in the Champions League, as Juventus haven't tasted such success since 1995-96 season. 

"The Champions League is a particular competition, the difference from the championship is big," he continued.

"There are many teams who want to win, but it depends on how you get there mentally and physically.

"We are at the level of the others, some maybe have a bigger advantage, but when you reach the knockout stages, everyone dreams of going all the way."

Napoli halted the unbeaten run for Juve with a 1-0 victory at the Stadio Diego Maradona; however, Pirlo felt his men did well against the Partenopei. 

"We start the season with the desire to win everything," Pirlo said. "We are halfway through the season and we are still in the running on all fronts.

"Saturday was a good match and only the result was missing."

Pirlo affirmed

Leonardo Bonucci

and

Paulo Dybala

are not prepared to play however said they will trip with the remainder of the squad. 

"They are called up, they will travel with us," he said. "Bonucci and Dybala are not available, while Ramsey is.

"They will travel with us because they want to be with the team."

The 41-year-old coach conceded Alvaro Morata is going through a troublesome time and will settle on him or Dejan Kulusevski as Cristiano Ronaldo's partner in the front line.

“Morata is not in the best period, but we know him. Sometimes he has these periods where he doesn’t do well,” Pirlo said.

“In the last period he has had some problems but he’s happy, he’s fine and he just needs to score goals again.

“They are both doing well, they have played great games and they are both available. Tomorrow we will evaluate who will start the game.”

 

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