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Andrea Pirlo hits out at Juventus stars Arthur and Paulo Dybala

Juventus v Cagliari Calcio - Serie A
Juventus v Cagliari Calcio - Serie A
Varun Totadri
Modified 25 Nov 2020, 19:18 IST

Juventus manager Andrea Pirlo delivered a critical assessment of his underperforming players on Tuesday night and took aim at Arthur and Paulo Dybala in particular.

Juventus secured an unconvincing victory over Ferencvaros in the Champions League with Alvaro Morata scoring a late goal to bail out the Serie A giants. Morata's stoppage-time winner helped Juventus book a place in the Round of 16 with two games two to spare.

Despite qualifying for the knockout stages of the Champions League, Pirlo was far from happy with what he saw across the 90 minutes from his players. The Italian took aim at midfielder Arthur, who joined Juventus in the summer from Barcelona in a deal worth £75 million that saw Miralem Pjanic go in the opposite direction.

"He got pig-headed today. He was keeping hold of the ball and trying to find more direct through balls when he should've spread it wide and tried to unlock the Frencvaros defence," Pirlo said.
"He should've opened up the game more to create one-on-one situations. If the ball was moved too slowly, it allowed them to get back into position," added Pirlo.

When asked by Sky Sport Italia pundit Fabio Capello if Arthur had the vision to split defences, Pirlo said that the player was still learning.

Juventus boss Andrea Pirlo was unhappy with the way Arthur and Paulo Dybala played on Tuesday night

Juventus v Ferencvaros Budapest: Group G - UEFA Champions League
Juventus v Ferencvaros Budapest: Group G - UEFA Champions League

Pirlo then took aim at Argentine forward Paulo Dybala. The player has fallen out of favour at Juventus this season to the surprise of many. The 27-year-old was voted the Most Valuable Player of the 2019-20 Serie A season, and many believed this would be the year he and Cristiano Ronaldo would lead Juventus to European glory.

Dybala made just his fourth start of the season on Tuesday. Pirlo called on the Argentine to start doing more in training to earn a regular spot in the team.

"Dybala didn't do that well, but as I said, he was injured and had to take antibiotics for weeks, so it's natural he needs time to get back into shape. He does need to go beyond his limits in training to rediscover his form," Pirlo noted.

Juventus have made a disappointing start to their Serie A campaign by their high standards. The Italian giants currently sit in fourth place in the league table, having won just four of their opening eight games.

However, Juventus are unbeaten in the Serie A and have also secured qualification to the knockout phases of the Champions League. The side have managed this despite not reaching their peak performance levels yet. Pirlo will look to improve various aspects of his team's play in the coming months.

Published 25 Nov 2020, 19:18 IST
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