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Allegri: ‘PSG will be a good test for the youngsters’

Juventus coach Max Allegri believes the Bianconeri’s final Champions League game of the season will be a good test for the younger players. The club have been decimated by injuries with a host of first team regulars out for tomorrow’s vital clash. Victory would assure Juve a place in the Europa League, but they face an in-form PSG side where Lionel Messi is enjoying a renaissance.

Speaking in his pre-match conference, Allegri explained who he will have available, and when the injured squad members may return to the team:

For tomorrow, apart from Locatelli, I won’t get anyone back. I have important players to play the game, we will have players who played against Lecce, some young men; It will be a good test for them too.

Tomorrow is an important game. Today is a strange conference, the first one I’m doing after 12 years without being in the next round in the Champions League.. Tomorrow is decisive for the Europa League, we must try to get there.

We have to play a perfect game because we face one of the best in Europe. Elimination from the Champions League? It burns a lot, I’m still angry and sorry. The fact that we cannot compare ourselves, from March onwards, with the best in Europe, must create anger and stimulus. We need to have a reaction, but we will think about Serie A the day after tomorrow.

The players we have available are enough: we have a mix between experienced and less experienced. We have to play an intelligent, good game, pay attention defensively because in Paris we conceded two goals. We must trust, as we had in Lecce.

Is the Europa League hassle or opportunity? All things are opportunities. Needless to talk about it now, let’s look at tomorrow’s result. Right now I don’t want to think about it, but just think about doing the best possible tomorrow.

Locatelli is better, tomorrow McKennie is missing, he has an edema, it’s not clear if it was picked up by a knock or a stretch. I have Locatelli, Rabiot, Fagioli and Miretti as midfielders. Pogba? I haven’t talked to him yet, I did previously. Once the decision was made not to be operated on immediately, the hopes that Paul could return with Juventus and for the World Cup were reduced to very low. He is sorry for the World Cup and for Juventus, we have been penalized because we have never had a player like him available.

Rabiot? He is doing important things. I am very happy for him because he is improving in performance, both technically and tactically. He has reached an excellent maturity, it is good for Juventus and for the French national team.

Iling Jr is out, but it’s less serious than expected, if the ankle remained on the ground it risked tibia and fibula and everything. We may have done something wrong, but we had traumatic injuries and there is nothing we can do there. We can only talk about those present. For Inter we will have to have Di Maria and Bremer available, for the last two matches this year we will have to have Paredes available.

We will see the others in January. Vlahovic? I forgot…Vlahovic is not available tomorrow, we hope to have him available for the match with Inter. Chiesa? Momentarily he is not in the ideal condition to play a game. He’s fine, he’s better. He played a game last Thursday after we returned from Lisbon, but he is not in optimal condition and has had 4 days of recovery. I was hoping to have him as soon as possible, but to date it is not so. I hope to have him back as soon as possible, as well as Pogba.

The youngsters? As soon as we finished the Lecce game, my concern was this: A negative aspect is that they are praised by everyone, so for a 20-year-old boy catapulted to the top, it’s not easy to  stay in balance.

I have looked at all the young players of Juventus this morning: fifteen are those born from 2001 to 2005, there are many good ones as well as in the Under 23’s, also in the Primavera. We cannot think and believe that a boy who has no experience in international matches with Juventus can, in addition to bringing enthusiasm, light-heartedness, good energy, solve problems. They must take a normal path and work in a peaceful and quiet way.

If they play at Juve they have quality, I’m not crazy to let them play. Everyone who played did it with me, starting with Kean from my last year until the last year. Juve did a great job underneath, but they all take a path. We can’t think that guys from 2000/2003 bring Juve to winning. It takes balance. When we are at Juventus you do not have the opportunity for one or the other to give the opportunity to play.”

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