Juventus will miss Max Allegri’s ability to develop players should he depart

By Mina Rzouki Share Tweet about an hour ago Juventus will miss Max Allegri's ability to develop players should he depart

Massimo Allegri candidly opens up on the rumours surrounding his future at Juve, saying he's only focusing on this season.

Many are still in the dark with regards to where Massimiliano Allegri's future lies. With the likes of Barcelona and potentially Arsenal looking for a new coach, even the happiest of tacticians may be tempted by the lure of a new experience.

Should Allegri choose to leave Juventus, the club will not only lose a champion but a man whose character is perfectly aligned with the values of the club. The personification of Stile Juve, Allegri may not be the passionate soul who awakens the tribalistic nature within every football fan but he's calm, elegant and the perfect man to diffuse the many awkward situations a club like Juventus finds itself embroiled in on a regular basis. A small joke here and there, a clever shift in focus and the self-deprecating attitude he brings to press conferences have helped enhance the club's elegant reputation.

Every coach has his strengths and weaknesses and timing can be everything. Allegri has benefitted from having a strong leadership in charge that is willing to support him, mentally and financially. Moreover, he inherited a squad that had recovered the winning mentality that eluded them before. However, what separates him from those before him and around him is his ability to enhance the strengths of a side rather than concentrate on masking their deficiencies.

He focuses on developing the players, ensuring their progression to solidify the unit. He doesn't care for non-stop rock and roll football that overwhelms the opponent nor is he obsessed with a beautiful passing game. He, alongside the likes of Carlo Ancelotti, are masters at combining the pragmatic with the romantic ideals of football to create a winning machine. This is perhaps why no matter how tough a season can be with so many fixtures to be played, Allegri's sides rarely seem emotionally exhausted. Players have come and others have departed yet Juve's style of play has rarely suffered.

UdineseUdinese JuventusJuventus 2:00 PM UTC Game Details Home: 15/2 Draw: 16/5 Away: 9/20 Odds from bet365 bet365 PickCenter

Developing players is a difficult thing to do especially when one must contend with packed schedules yet most — if not every — player Allegri has coached at Juventus has improved, either technically or emotionally. Carlos Tevez went from being a selfish player criticised for his attitude to being one who sacrificed the glory of scoring to help develop Alvaro Morata. Alex Sandro has been polished and refined, developing from a player who was a little rough around the edges to being the leader who commands the left lane.

However, it's Mario Mandzukic who has perhaps transformed the most under Allegri's tutelage. He famously once admitted to not having the motivation to play against the "village teams" while Felix Magath was often livid with the striker: "No coach can tame him!"

Mandzukic was frequently accused of not training effectively and neglecting his defensive duties. Even Diego Simeone publicly blasted the Croatian, reminding him to put the team ahead of himself during his time at Atletico Madrid.

For anyone who has followed his career closely, Mandzukic is now a player transformed. Not only is he a leader who gives everything for the sake of the unit but he's proved even better at recovering possession and tracking back than the defensive players within the side. A pleasure to have in the dressing room and a hard worker on the pitch, Mandzukic listened to Allegri and chose to prove himself guaranteeing first team action on a weekly basis and performing better than he's ever managed in his career thus far.

Leonardo Bonucci, the man who lashed out at the tactician in full view of the world, said it best when he said: "In certain moments, he [Allegri] knows how to unleash that hunger, that anger and mental intensity which he's repeatedly proved he has.

Gab Marcotti believes Juventus are content with what Paulo Dybala provides and likely wouldn't bring in Alexis Sanchez.

"His way of understanding football is very clever, because he knows how to read the qualities of a squad and, as we've seen this year and work out the best way to put those qualities on the pitch."

Losing Allegri will be a tough pill to swallow and while club management will fully support whomever may take over, many hope the tactician will choose to stay. Until a decision has been made, the fans can enjoy the team's progression.

Udinese will host Juventus next and should the Bianconeri win, the will open a 10-point gap at the top of the table as Napoli defeated Roma on Saturday. Luigi Del Neri's team have been suffering in recent weeks, collecting three league defeats in a row and conceding six goals in the process.

A team that's yet to mature fully, they concede penalties far too easily and concede possession cheaply. Yet as we have all come to realise, teams always play with greater motivation when facing the Champions of Italy and Udinese have managed to score against the bigger sides, even managing a win against Milan in late January.

Set to deploy the 4-2-3-1 formation and all their stars, Juventus will be hoping for another away win.

Mina Rzouki covers Juventus and the Italian national team for ESPN FC. Follow her on Twitter: @Minarzouki.


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