Allegri revels in Juve's confidence-boosting win over holders Chelsea

By Sports Desk September 29, 2021

Juventus head coach Massimiliano Allegri highlighted the importance of beating Chelsea after his underperforming side topped the Champions League holders to preserve their 100 per cent record in Group H.

Federico Chiesa scored the earliest second-half goal in Opta's Champions League records as Juve overcame Chelsea 1-0 in Turin on Wednesday.

Juve came into the blockbuster showdown with just two wins from their first six Serie A fixtures this season, though they did ease past Malmo in their Champions League opener.

It is only the fourth time Juve have won their first two matches of the Champions League group phase without conceding a single – the last two (this season and 2018-19) have been under Allegri.

Allegri revelled in the result as Juve continue to grow in his second stint at the Italian giants, having replaced Andrea Pirlo in the off-season.

"It was important to get the three points, this victory is a step forward to pass the group stage," Allegri told reporters.

"It is also important for the lads because they won against the European champions. This victory is good for all of us as it boosts the morale of the team.

"We played well against a very physical team; the team was very organised defensively. We did not concede much, we had also some chance and in some moments we could do better when managing the ball.

"This helps us understand that you also achieve big objectives through this kind of games."

Juve are unbeaten in their last four Champions League encounters against Chelsea (W2 D2), winning their last two without conceding.

The Bianconeri have won 12 of their last 13 Champions League group-stage games (L1), winning each of the last four without conceding a goal.

Allegri added: "There are no turns. It is a game that allows us to go to six points and certainly look at the champions with more optimism to try to go through. Then the championship is another thing.

"The team understood: because when you manage to have possession of the ball, to have dominion over the field, then we keep the ball. When you have an opponent who still does not allow it, it is normal that you have to adapt and you have to play a defensive game." 

Juve finished the match with just 26.9 per cent possession and passing accuracy of 74.6 per cent, while they mustered only one shot on target.

After nullifying Chelsea star Romelu Lukaku, Juve and Italy defender Leonardo Bonucci said: "I see it more as a game that should serve as a lesson. But as mentioned it was a bit of matches we were looking for that attitude that we had lost a bit in recent years and that had only been seen in fits and starts.

"It must be the demonstration, it must be an example, it must not be the exception. The mental intensity and the desire to be a team on every ball: that made the difference tonight because the qualities are there.

"Sometimes maybe we are technically wrong too much, but with this mentality, with this intensity that we had tonight, the victories in certain games come as a consequence."

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