Juventus’ head coach, Massimiliano Allegri, has openly expressed his concerns about the team’s striker, Paulo Dybala. Allegri fears too much praise may have negative effect on Dybala’s future performances with the Old Lady. In his opinion, the 22-year old striker needs to concentrate on developing his skills and fulfilling his full potential.
Allegri’s concerns resulted from the praise young Dybala has been receiving, after he assisted Juventus in their 1 to 0 win against one of their greatest Serie A rivals, AC Milan. It was Dybala’s goal, which settled the clash in the Old Lady’s favour, this past Saturday. Towards the end of the match, the Argentine was replaced, but as he headed for the sidelines, he was accompanied by the fans’ roar and was even given a standing ovation. Many started drawing parallels between Dybala and former Juventus forward Carlos Tevez.
And indeed, Dybala enjoys a great success ever since he joined the Serie A team. He was transferred from Palermo after Juventus reportedly paid €40 million for his move. Dybala was intended to replace Tevez, after the latter parted ways with the club to return to his home country, Argentina.
Despite his limited time on the pitch, Dybala has already netted six goals for Juventus. His fans have even expressed their disappointment that Allegri refuses to feature Dybala as a starter more frequently. However, it might turn out the coach’s decisions are completely justified.
On Tuesday, Allegri said he had not yet made up his mind, whether or not Dybala will be featured in the starting lineup of the important match against Manchester City. Allegri’s other option is the Croatian striker, Mario Mandzukic. The Croatian has not been in top shape as of late and his recent performances on the pitch have failed to impress. In comparison to Dybala, Mandzukic has managed to score only two goals so far. Many blame him for Juventus’ poor season start. Despite that, it is far from impossible for Allegri to choose him as a starting striker, instead of younger Dybala.
Allegri himself told reporters, it was not the public displeasure at Dybala’s limited starting time, he was fearing. The coach is much more concerned about the attention and praise the 22-year old Argentinian has attracted lately. In Allegri’s opinion, Dybala’s recent performances are exceptional, but all the compliments may end up getting to his head. The coach fears this might affect the striker’s play for the worse, and arrest his further development as a player.
Besides, as Allegri pointed out, Dybala is young, he is not ready to carry the full responsibility for Juventus, at least not at this point of his career. “Paulo needs to be left in peace so he can keep maturing and improving”, Allegri said.
Juve’s coach attempted to defend Mandzukic, who has been getting a lot of negative backlash in the past few months. Allegri pointed out Mandzukic has plenty of time to score his “share of goals” before the season comes to an end. He went on to say even though Mandzukic has netted only two goals so far, these were very important ones, which further goes to show the Croatian is needed in the team.