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Pirlo admits using Serie A matches for ‘pre-season’ tests

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Juventus manager Andrea Pirlo has admitted to using the early Serie A matches thus far as his pre-season, describing the matches as ‘tests’.

The Old Lady came from behind twice last night to secure the draw against Roma, and the manager conceded that he was still testing his side.

“Roma attacked with many players like us so it was a different game than Sampdoria [who they 3-0 last weekend],” he told reporters after the match (via Goal).

“This was a step backwards but we are a team under construction. We didn’t have time to try any solutions in pre-season so these games are tests.

“But, in the end, it was a point earned. [Alvaro] Morata only arrived two days ago, Arthur has not played for six months and has to adapt to Italian football. [Rodrigo] Bentancur is also starting to feel a bit better. The condition of these important players needs to grow a bit.”

Having taken over the side this summer, he has had limited time to get to grips with his squad, but you can’t help but question a couple of decisions.

Taking off McKennie instead of Rabiot when the latter was on a yellow card resulted in us playing out the final half hour with a man less. Alvaro Morata was thrown straight into the side despite only arriving two days ago from Atletico Madrid, which rarely ever happens for new signings. I on the other hand looked at our starting line-up and knew that the defence was going to have a tough time.

Whether the manager was ready to try and outscore our rivals, and whether Morata arrived in a fitter condition than some of our other options are questions only Pirlo will know the answer to, but the end result was a positive attacking performance, and a point gained.

Has Pirlo been forced into testing his players during the campaign? Will the manager be assessing his own decisions as much as his players?


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