Del Piero on Dybala, Ronaldo and ‘Champions League favourites’ Chelsea

by | Sep 13, 2021 16:27

Former Juventus attacker Alessandro Del Piero believes Chelsea are favourites to win the Champions League, spoke about Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure from the Allianz Stadium and Paulo Dybala’s ‘enormous potential’.

The Bianconeri have struggled initially this term and are still searching for their first win since Massimiliano Allegri returned to the club.

Ronaldo returned to Manchester United this summer but Del Piero said the farewell was not a big surprise.

“I don’t think we should talk about being unprepared, but about dealing with reality,” Del Piero told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Obviously, CR7 didn’t want to stay, just as obvious as it could have been useful not paying such a heavy salary.

“If the question refers to how he has been replaced, I say that we must measure ourselves with economic resources.

“I still think that Juventus’ attack can be very competitive.”

But Del Piero doesn’t believe Juventus made a mistake signing Ronaldo three years ago.

“Ronaldo is a champion and he had to be signed. Rather, the problem was the team’s failure to grow around the superstar,” Del Piero continued.

“We have often judged Cristiano’s performances almost unrelated to that of Juventus and it’s symptomatic of something that didn’t work.

“The result in Europe has not been up to par, but if we think that [Manchester] City have not won a Champions League yet, we understand how investments are not always synonymous with victories.”

Del Piero said Paulo Dybala has already shown he can be a protagonist at the Allianz Stadium and believes freedom will help the Argentine ‘exploit his enormous potential’.

“In my opinion, he has already given them a lot in the past. He should go back to this level,” he said. “You don’t play with the pressure of having to win alone.

“The freer he is, the more he will make a difference by exploiting his enormous potential.”

The former captain thinks Max Allegri’s return to the club is positive, but stressed the coach has a big job ahead.

“I like Allegri, I think he has clear ideas,” Del Piero added. “He cannot work miracles, because he is the first to know that Juve’s problem couldn’t be traced back to technical guidance alone.

“The work to be done is great, both in the dressing room and on the pitch.”

Juventus return to the Champions League against Malmö FF tomorrow and are drawn with Zenit St Petersburg and Chelsea too.

Del Piero believes the Blues, who won the competition last term, are still one of two favourites to win in 2021-22.

“Chelsea have extraordinary quality and have strengthened the squad,” Del Piero said. “They are in first row with Paris Saint-Germain.

“Manchester City and Bayern Munich are immediately behind, then the other English and Spanish sides.

“Right now, the Italians are behind: we have to get used to starting from better ideas and lower costs. But the values of the beginning of the season doesn’t always correspond to the final outcome.”

Del Piero

6 Comments

  1. Donato Totaro

    Smart man Del Piero. Italian teams will continue to suffer in Europe simply because they are financially behind them.

  2. ITALIAN ALL THE WAY

    We won the Euro and possibly win the world cup Italy i would not make that comment if i were Del Piero especially after he cost us the Euro 2000 with his botched striking twice. This guy should go away along with all the reporters (puppets) and pundits that constantly beat Italy down. Ronaldo was a waste for Juve and though he could carry Juve to UCL instead he failed and no journalist write about it but praise him. Where have all the true journalist gone.

  3. Andrew

    @ITALIAN ALL THE WAY how were his comments so out of line? Disagree if you wish, but basing his comments on “botched striking” over 20 years ago is quite a stretch. If you have issues with his missed chances, why not go back and see his goal against Germany in 2006 WC semi-final!! Unlike you, he has been there and done it. Juve failed Ronaldo just as much as Ronaldo failed them. And despite Italy’s win at Euros this year, Italian CLUB football is way behind other leagues, as we cannot compete financially with the spending of the Premier League, PSG, and a few other teams. I still prefer watching Serie A to other leagues, but it will be a difficult climb for any Italian team to win CL in the near future.

  4. Nana

    “Ronaldo is a champion and he had to be signed. Rather, the problem was the team’s failure to grow around the superstar”

    Thank you Il Capitano for spitting the truth.

  5. Revan

    Del piero said the truth tho, maybe italy win the euro but when it comes to serie a team we really far behind from those clubs.

  6. Feroli

    I think it’s going to be a bad year for Serie A teams in the CL this season. Unfortunately the gap in resources is getting bigger between the PL and Serie A. And the top La Ligament teams are all stronger than than the Serie A contenders. At international level Italy can compete because coaches and players cannot be bought – at club level, as Del Piero points out, Serie A has to get used to starting at ‘lower costs’.

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