Speaking ahead of Juventus’ reception of Benevento tomorrow afternoon, Andrea Pirlo underlined the importance of winning the remainder of the Bianconeri’s matches in order to remain in the title race. The manager also bemoaned the fact that Inter players would not play with their respective national sides next week, as a result of Covid-19 restrictions imposed by Milan’s health authorities – with four players in the Nerazzurri squad testing positive.
His press conference transcribed in Corriere dello Sport, Pirlo went on to emphasise the importance of Cristiano Ronaldo to his team – amid rumours of a potential departure – as well as give an update on forward Paulo Dybala’s recovery from injury.
“We were informed of it and we accepted it. We and other clubs have played with cases [of Covid-19 in the team], but different actions were taken because the ASL [local health authority] had intervened. Unfortunately, it’s happened at a good time for Inter, who will have the chance to work without even having to send their players out to their national teams. In this sense, they were lucky.”
“Tomorrow will be an important match because it’s coming before the international break, we know that we’re facing a squad that’s coming to get a result. […] We know that we need to try and win as many games as possible, but it won’t just depend on us. We have to concentrate on our own efforts, we have the chance to win all of the remaining games and we have to believe in ourselves. It’s our duty to put pressre on ourselves, we have the chance to close the gap but it will depend on ourselves.”
“Cristiano Ronaldo still has a year left on his contract, and we’re pleased that he can continue with us. […] Right now we’re just thinking about finishing the season well, since the season’s in full swing. I talk a lot with [Dybala], he has a lot of desire to play and contribute. He seems calm and willing to me, hopefully he can be a great addition for the final straight. On a physical level he’s doing well, he’s been carrying out fitness training, but on the ball and when changing direction he was in some discomfort. Hopefully we can have him back during the break, he’ll have two weeks to join up with the team again and we’ll assess him on a day-to-day basis.”