Lazio coach Igor Tudor opened up about his project in Rome, the decisive Coppa Italia semi-final clash with Juventus and the transformations in his squad.

The Biancocelesti have started to look positive under the Croatian coach following his arrival last month, winning their last two league games against Genoa and Salernitana, and now they’ll have to overcome a 2-0 deficit in their Coppa Italia semi-final tie.

Juventus have been in dire form over the last few months, managing just two wins in their last 12 league matches, and seemingly have little to play for except the Coppa Italia, giving them an extra boost in motivation ahead of the clash at the Stadio Olimpico.

Tudor press conference

Speaking in a press conference via TMW, Tudor first discussed what he’s asked of his Lazio squad against Juventus.

“An important match because we are playing to get into the final, against a strong team and with a result that isn’t easy.

“We must try until the end with all our strength to pass, we must believe and play a perfect match. Don’t make any mistakes and go with all our strength, this is our objective and let’s see what happens.”

Tudor was asked how long it would take to see his ‘real’ Lazio.

“It’s always difficult to talk about percentages, we’ve always played good games since I arrived. I’m never satisfied, I always try to grow and improve, as said after Genoa maybe we can take a step back to take two steps forward.

“However, as I grow, I see great participation and the pleasure in the players of finding themselves in this football. We are on the right path.”

Tudor touched on if the win over Juventus in the league could be a match to repeat.

“We played two matches against them, each match is different from the other. The interpreters change, the details, the ideas are the same but then many situations can change the match. You have to believe, that’s the beauty of football.

“I hope it will be a long match, I saw the boys very motivated, and they believe in it. We did little, we had to recover after Genoa. Today we’ll finish things off and choose who to play.”

Tudor discussed Ciro Immobile, Matteo Guendouzi and Valentin Castellanos.

“Immobile trained yesterday, he’s fine and has been called up. Guendouzi has done two training sessions, and he will be there too. I had a good chat with Taty, sometimes he cares too much.

“He has important qualities and feels he can do even more, I try to bring out the best in every player. He played an excellent game against Salernitana, then like every striker he thinks about goals instead.”

The Lazio coach spoke about what he’s asked of his defence.

“It’s something we’ve analysed, we’re conceding a few goals due to defensive errors. Here there were a lot of inputs into the area, now we work a lot on the duels and by going so far forward you lose clarity in going back and covering better.

“It’s difficult to get everything, maybe you get better answers on some things, the more you work on one aspect the better you are, but maybe you lose something on other things.

“We have to work to have that solidity and to stay on track even when defending low, that thing that Juve does so well excellent. They are good at that.”

Tudor spoke about the improvements to the Lazio attack.

“We work on the courage to enter the penalty area with many players, then we work on some situations, but this is linked to the characteristics of the players. With Salernitana I saw four goals and we could have scored others, I saw interesting things.

“In Genoa it was more complicated, but we work on this every day, on details that in reality aren’t details in the end.”

Finally, Tudor discussed his preparations for the match against Juventus.

“The players prepare for a match like this on their own, if you don’t understand on your own there’s nothing you can do.

“Everyone likes playing these matches, motivation is at its highest and for me it’s easier to prepare for this match, as much attention as possible in not making any mistakes.”

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