(Reuters) – Juventus are not short of desire to win but the players must be patient when matches do not go their way, manager Massimiliano Allegri said on Tuesday in the wake of their controversial and fractious draw with Salernitana.
Tempers flared in the 2-2 home draw where Juve’s stoppage time winner was disallowed by VAR and four red cards were handed out in the ensuing chaos, including one for Allegri.
But Juve now turn their attention to hosting Benfica in the Champions League on Wednesday as the Italian side seek their first win following a loss to Paris St Germain last week.
“We always have a great desire and this sometimes leads us to want to overdo it. The matches are long, we have more than 90 minutes to win them and we must be patient and always play as a team,” Allegri told reporters.
“We have to find balance, understanding certain moments in matches. Sometimes you can’t score but you don’t have to concede. It’s no shame if the first half ends 0-0, the important thing is not to concede.
“Each player must do his work, with simplicity. Results are achieved by playing as a team, even in difficulties. There are always difficult moments, it is a part of football, but the important thing is to always give our best.”
Allegri said winger Angel Di Maria has recovered but did not say if he would start the match while goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny is a doubt. Alex Sandro, Adrien Rabiot and Manuel Locatelli are out.
Roger Schmidt’s Benfica come into the match in a rich vein of form having won their last 11 matches in the league and Champions League, including qualifiers.
“Benfica have an important European history and are used to playing these games. They are an aggressive team, coming off the back of 11 wins,” Allegri said.
“Tomorrow is not decisive, but important. We will have to play as a team and be compact.”
(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)