Conte wants Juventus to brace for an “uphill” battle in Champions League
Juventus manager Antonio Conte insists his side should prepare for an “uphill” battle in the Champions League following a 2-2 draw against Galatasaray. Conte believes his team needs to acquire some good results in the knock-out stage.
Juventus remain second on the table in Group B following two draws. Their first draw occurred against FC Copenhagen. The Serie A champions are falling behind first-placed Real Madrid, who thrashed FC Copenhagen 4-0 on Wednesday night.
A defensive lapse allowed Didier Drogba to draw first blood for Galatasaray in the 36th minute but two comeback goals in the 78th minute and 87 minute gave Juventus the lead. Aruto Vidal scored from the spot before Fabio Quagliarella provided the lead. However, only a minute after that Umut Bulut leveled the scoreline.
Conte rued over the last minute goal scored against him. The Turin boss admits his side need to remain diligent and on their toes for the remaining games of the group stages.
“You have to pay attention, even if the team has put in all of the effort to overturn the result,” Conte told Sky Sports. “Now the path is uphill, but we should not be discouraged. We will have to play to our very maximum in the next four games. If we are good enough then we will progress, but if we do not progress it will be because others were better.”
Conte believes his side played well, especially since Stephan Lichtsteiner and Mirko Vucinic had succumbed to injuries.
“Lichtsteiner and Vucinic have muscle injuries, but I cannot change the system because we don't have the wingers necessary to play in a 4-3-3 except Simone Pepe,” Conte added. “I must always make a decision based on what I have available in the squad. I cannot play Lichtsteiner or Mauricio Isla higher up.”
On the other hand, Galatasaray’s new manager Roberto Mancini lamented over Juventus’ penalty kick goal.
“It was a strange game, as Juve went behind and they were awarded a penalty which was, shall we say, strange?” Mancini told Sky Sport Italia. “I don't think they would have been able to score tonight without the penalty and I don't think should have been one.”