Lica Toni

Luca Toni: “Vlahovic is a classic nine, Zirkzee is more of a 9 and a half’


Former Fiorentina and Bayern striker believes Joshua Zirkzee and Dusan Vlahovic could work well together, if Juve decide to sign the Dutchman. The Bianconeri have been linked with a move for the Dutch forward in recent weeks, and speaking with La Gazzetta dello Sport, Toni explained how Zirkzee could pair well in the Bianconeri’s forward line:

Can two number 9’s coexist?

“Vlahovic is a classic number 9, he excels mainly inside the penalty area and in finishing. Dusan is a goal scorer, the classic goal-scoring machine. Zirkzee, on the other hand, is more of a false 9.”

“He has the physique of a center-forward, but in terms of characteristics, he’s someone who likes to drop back to link up play. He’s less of a goal scorer than Vlahovic. They are two young, strong forwards who, on paper, are compatible.”

How many goals could a Vlahovic-Zirkzee partnership guarantee?

“At least forty, but it also depends on the players supporting them.”

Which team would you see Zirkzee fitting in better with in the future?

“In any team. We’re talking about a talent with great potential. And he comes from the Bayern school, so he’s used to playing in a top club. Maybe if he wants to be a starter, Zirkzee won’t return to Munich because there’s Harry Kane there… I hope he stays in Italy because I always hope to see as many champions as possible in Serie A. I think Thiago Motta’s future could also influence the choices of the Bologna striker: it’s always useful and intelligent to work with a coach who knows you and values you.”

Would Zirkzee be enough for Juventus to get closer to Inter?

“Zirkzee would be a good reinforcement. But Juventus need to raise the level especially in midfield. To get closer to Inter, which has already secured Zielinski for free, they need one or two real midfield signings. Giuntoli has shown he’s good at it, and I’m convinced he’ll succeed this time too.”

Could Juventus start next season with a 4-2-3-1 formation: could it be the right setup to enhance the attackers?

“The formation should be the consequence of the players you have, not the starting point. The important thing is to have strong players.”

What do you think about Allegri’s future?

“Max is close to Champions League qualification and if he also wins the Coppa Italia, he has achieved the objectives set by the club. We can debate about the style of play, but he’s in line with the plans, and that’s not a minor detail. That said, the feeling, at least from the outside, is that Allegri’s cycle is considered over and Juventus will change in the summer. We’ll see: in that case, I would feel sorry for Max, who hasn’t done anything wrong. It’s just that Inter has a superior squad.”


Serie A obsessive.