This Cover is Home Made by Pablo Giles! Great Work Mate!

Here he is, another contributor for MyJuventus.net, “Pablo Giles”. I wish him the very best of luck. Wellcome in MYJUVENTUS.NET team. Enjoy. 


These are dark times. Certainly not the best Juventus has seen this season. They are indeed frustrating times. YES, we remain unbeaten, but we should ask ourselves, are these draws gonna cut it against Milan? Or against a breathing-down-our-neck Lazio? 

NO, they aren’t. So we need to start winning, pronto.

Many-a-things bother us Juventinos these days. Be it Mirko Lazynic, or that Marchisio appears to have been kissed by a Dementor lately, or the late subs, or the never-ending Elia absence. Yes, they bother us all, but with a game against Genoa in a few days time, a certain particular teeny tiny problem comes to mind, which in a way, kind of overshadows the others:
WE HAVE NO CENTRAL DEFENDERS.
So, you may indulge and understand that this preview will slightly tilt towards that matter.
Both Chiellini and Barzagli are indisposed, for 10 and 20 days respectively. This comes as a great blow since the first had been playing amazingly lately in his usual world-class level, while the second is enjoying his single best career run while establishing himself one of the most solid and constant defenders in Europe’s 2011-2012 season.
But as good as they’ve been, the match vs Chievo saw both of them limp out of the pitch, to much of our aggravation.
The remaining available CB was Leonardo Bonucci, who was fielded vs Bologna (what about Sorensen, a distracted fan may ask. Well, no, we gave him away in january…but I´ll angrily rant about that later). Now, inexplicably, painfully, open-mouthlly, Bonucci was able to add to his horrible run of form and managed to receive two yellow cards and a sending off to the showers, just when victory seemed clinchable. So now we don’t even have Bonucci. Which brings us back to the point:
Sunday, at the Luigi Ferraris…WE HAVE NO CENTRAL DEFENDERS. I swear, somewhere, Rodrigo Palacio is grinning. A man who stands 5th in the Capocannoniere race with a staggering 14 goals. They come from not very flattering results, but with very good individual performances. Two consecutive doubles by Palacio and Sculli, while they boast a midfield with the likes of Kucka and Veloso. Dangerous.
So, what we gonna do? Who are the candidates? Who is gonna play? Who cuts Conte’s hair?

MARTÍN CÁCERES

A must. This man represents the word versatile. So far we’ve used him in different positions. He can play FullBack, WingBack, emergency CB. Hell, by his curling goal against Milan, I’d even field him as a Forward. Love the guy. Anyway, he already played as a CB last match when we needed back-up for that zone, and he lived up to the moment in great fashion, demonstrating why he was initially brought and why he is a perfect addition to a solid back-line. Arguably, one of our best men on the pitch he was solid, great in the air and appeared comfortable in his position. Maybe a little bit tipsy in his passing. So knowing Conte, (and common sense)who has already used him, there’s no reason to believe he isn’t gonna start at CB again. So, instead of the question being who will form our central defense is who will partner Martín at center back.

ARTURO VIDAL

The idea of a Vidal/Cáceres duo on defense is not particularly discouraging. Arturois not a stranger to defensive positions. Even though he was pushed forward in Bayern Leverkusen, his early years saw him feature in much more defensive zones of the pitch. Apart from his flair and skill, he indeed possesses the qualities of a defender, being a beast at tackling. But here is where stupid logic applies. Logically, if we use him as a defender, we lose him as a midfielder, and that is a tad scary.
Remember the game against Chievo, where Michael Bradley owned our midfield? Well, we didn’t have Vidal there, and we felt that. Last match he came back and it made a whole difference. He was everywhere. So, since Vidal clearly brings an extra quality to our midfield, the decision to use him as a defender and leave pot-smoking-in-the-dressing-room Marchisio by himself, we might be in for a scare in the center of the pitch. Risky, but if De Rossi could, why can’t King Arthur?
(Reports claim Conte has been training him defensive-wise).

SIMONE PADOIN

Some of us still don’t know where Padoin actually plays. Is he inside midfield? Outside? Right? Left? Wing-back? Conte even played him as a proper 4-4-2 winger not long ago to much of our bitter amazement, since we wanted to see Elia. Just a glimpse. See how he looks like. Honest.
Anyway, fact is he was brought in January as a utility player to reinforce our over-reinforced and under-rotated midfield. I never agreed with those 5 million, but there’s no use in crying over spilt millions… Last game when Bonucci saw red and Pepe was brought out to bring in a “defender” to make up for the 10 man deficit, some confusion arose, mainly because the man in charge was watching the match from a screen in the dressing room. It wasn’t clear which from Vidal or Padoin was appointed to the defender role. Ultimately, Simone was confirmed and consequently played alongside Martín for 10 minutes or so. The advantages to having Padoin on defense are that he is not a complete stranger to defending, I think. And we would see Arturo on midfield, which is reassuring. Other than that, I can think of no more benign aspects to Padoin playing CB. And again, given that the decision last match was to use him as defensive back-up, there is a slight possibility that we will see him there again on Sunday. Sigh.

PRIMAVERA?

Some reports before Juve vs Bologna claimed that a certain Gouano had been given a berth at the Bianconeri bench. I fell for them. They weren’t true. Now, the situation is the same, so I thought that giving a chance to a Primavera lad wouldn’t and shouldn’t be off the table. Though, considering our youth inclusion policy, which apparently states that a player must be loaned out until he is 22 years old to be given a chance, I must admit it is quite a remote possibility. Still, notwithstanding and nonetheless:
GOUANO, MAGNUSSON, RUBIN…
It appears we have a strong youth sector nowadays. These lads, along with their fellas have made impressive achievements so far. They won theViareggio Cup some weeks ago, and are now disputing the final of the Coppa Italia against the Wolf. Young, unexperienced, but not to be taken lightly. Not even considering them would be disrespectful.
Even though Magnusson is the most Twitter-active, it is the Gouano and Rubin partnership that is most commonly used by coach Baroni. However all three are regarded as future solid defenders.
It is highly unlikely that Conte will actually use on of them, even as an emergency, were we in England, or Spain, or a lesser team for that matter, things would be different, but they aren’t.
Not many information regarding their technical capabilities. Would be nice to see one of these Primavera lads some day soon.
AS FOR THE REST
We need cover from the flanks and a solid presence on the center. But we will also need pressing upfront to avoid giving space.
Be very weary of counter-attacks, since we don’t have the Barzagli-slide-tackle on our side this time.
I feel we rather have a solid midfield than a pseudo-solid defense next game.
If we use Vidal as a defender, the defense will look more aggressive, but our midfield might disappear, as happened vs Chievo. And games like these are generally  won or lost on midfield.
So…..
My Starting XI:
4-5-1 Superman/Licht-Martín-Padoin-DeCeglie/Pepe-Vidal-Pirlo-Giacch-Vuc/Matri
It might appear less secure on defense, but our midfield will be strong, stopping sneakiness from Genoa.
I don’t think Using Licht as a CB and having Padoin take his place is a good idea, either. Lichtsteiner was born to go forward.
Yes, you heard it. No Elia and yes Vucinic. This one actually is not a starting game for Elia. Last one was, or the one before. Not this one. We’ll have to wait a bit longer. However, we could sub him on the second half as an attacker to create more pressure.
Vucinic? I’ve also been angry at him for long. He doesn’t quite deserve a starting role, but we could use him vs Genoa. He just scored and that may have a good impact on his game and consequently on the whole team. Quags could do it, but he is even less back-tracking than Mirko and hasn’t been on top-form either, being honest. Anyway, he doesn’t even play in that position, so I’m going with Mirko.
Matri HAS to put on his shooting boots.
Vidal, we know what he has to do. Help on defense and on offense, simple, right?  Pirlo, just play like he did vs Catania.
Giacch, run like hell!
Cover, cover, cover.
We are playing Genoa at the Luigi Ferraris. Always a tricky game, coming from a series of unflattering results, and not showing our best football. But the destiny fairy is benevolent, as we are given a new chance, not only to redeem ourselves, but to actually go top (cheer for Lecce!).
Are we contenders? Are we champions? Do we want that 41/2 star status back to 5 star on FIFA13?
Let’s wake up and show our worth!!!
Hmm, forgot to rant about Sorensen. Meh, well, I guess there is no point. Whatever happens, we have to stand strong in Genoa and wipe that grin off Palacio’s face!
Fino alla Fine.
by Pablo Giles
(I am new here, this is my first post. Sorry if it’s too long. Hope you like it. Comments and opinions are hugely welcome).
  
Uh, that Conte hair thing wasn’t for real. Its just it looks so soft!
Hmm..its not a toupee…..is it?