Fireworks are expected from tomorrow evening’s Berlusconi Trophy clash against Milan, an annual clash between the Bianconeri and Rossoneri always provides a red-hot atmosphere. It’s a spirited Juventus side who make the short journey south, buoyed by their encouraging display on Thursday night.

Last weekend’s goalless draw against Betis was followed by a determined, attacking performance on Thursday, giving the public an brief glimpse of how Conte’s Juventus are taking shape. The manager, however, called for time and insisted that a rational approach to his new era is required.

“It makes me chuckle that after Betis people were saying that there’s still a lot of work to be done, while following Thursday night they’re talking about the title.
I’m asking for patience to let me get my ideas across to the group. We’re coming from two seventh-place finishes, while Milan won the Scudetto last year and Inter won everything just a couple of years ago. There’s a gap, but it doesn’t have to be a hindrance. There’s a great desire to do well and get back to being competitive.”

Juve’s TIM Trophy campaign saw a spectacular debut from Chilean Arturo Vidal. The midfield livewire found the target, hit the crossbar and then set up Matri’s winner with a perfectly-weighted cross. Conte valued the pre-season workout and sought to praise the Bianconeri’s recent arrival.

“The TIM trophy allowed us to understand the importance of the work that we’re doing, which can enable us to get back to being competitive.
“Vidal is a versatile player and has played in practically every position with the national team, apart from in goal. In Bari, we only had Vucinic, Del Piero and Matri as our strikers and there was need for support.”

On the subject of the transfer market, Juve’s former captain paid tribute to Marotta’s role in the Vucinic signing and declared that activity was still ongoing behind the scenes to bring more new faces to Turin.

“Since becoming Juventus manager I’ve had daily meetings with the directors. Marotta has done well to wait for Vucinic and move at the right time. We know the path we’re on, numbers wise we’re still a little short and other players will arrive in due course.”

Conte’s press conference ended with the unexpected revelation of Milan’s line-up by a journalist. The Rossoneri manager, Massimiliano Allegri, had already announced the following selection ahead of the game: Abbiati; Abate, Nesta, Bonera, Taiwo; Gattuso, Ambrosini, Seedorf; Boateng, Emanuelson; Cassano. When asked by a journalist to follow suit, Conte smiled and commented that Juve’s opponents looked “strong”. He did, however, confirm a player returning to action and several who will miss the season’s curtain-raiser.

“Marchisio is available and trained with the group today. Pepe, Martinez and Toni will not feature at the Berlusconi because I’d prefer them to continue to train to be 110% for Tuesday’s return to Vinovo.”