Massimiliano Allegri has apologised for Juventus’ defeat to Benfica, but insisted defeat is not a failure as they crash out of the Champions League.
- Juventus out of Champions League
- Beaten 4-3 by Benfica
- Allegri sorry but not dwelling on result
WHAT HAPPENED? Juventus’ difficult season took another turn for the worst as their exit from the Champions League was confirmed with a game to spare following a crushing 4-3 defeat away to Benfica. Head coach Allegri, who has come under fire several times this season, refused to dwell on the result and its consequences.
WHAT THEY SAID: Allegri explained to reporters post-match: “More than the wrong approach, I think we were too soft in defence in the first half. We are disappointed and angry because we are out of the Champions League. Now we have to focus on the [Italian] league and also remain focused against Paris (Saint-Germain next Wednesday) because we have at least to book a place in the Europa League.”
Allegri went further, while also apologising for the defeat: “We made too many mistakes tonight but it’s not useful to talk about that now. I don’t consider this a failure. In football there are also defeats.”
THE BIGGER PICTURE: The 4-3 scoreline was not the truest reflection of another poor Juve performance on the night. The Old Lady found themselves 4-1 down after 50 minutes on Tuesday, completely crumbling under the pressure in Lisbon and only rallying towards the end. They can now only qualify for the Europa League.
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WHAT NEXT FOR JUVENTUS? The Old Lady host Paris Saint-Germain in the final matchday, and could still miss out on dropping into Europa League competition if they fail to get a result and Maccabi Haifa pull off an upset against Benfica.