- Title: ITALY: FOOTBALL / SOCCER - Allegri takes up Juventus challenge
- Date: 16th July 2014
- Summary: STUTTGART, GERMANY (MARCH 4, 2014) (REUTERS) ARTURO VIDAL TRAINING
- Reuters ID: LVA8S3LRKQRHBPWGDVHFQCSQET2S
- Location: Italy
- Country: Italy
- Duration: 00:00:06
- Aspect Ratio:
- Topics: Sports
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None
- Story Text: Former AC Milan manager Massimiliano Allegri told reporters on Wednesday (July 16) that he was delighted to be at the helm of Juventus after replacing Antonio Conte.
Italian media reported that Allegri has signed a two-year deal that will earn him two million euros (1.58 million pounds) a season plus bonuses.
Allegri 's arrival has been met with scepticism from many Juve fans, but the new manager said he was undeterred.
"I understand the scepticism of the fans, because in just one day the Juventus Coach has been changed. How will I get their support? With results, with hard work with respect," he told a news conference.
"I understand how important it is coaching Juventus is, I did it for four years at Milan, so I think I am qualified and ready to continue this winning streak that Juventus have had for the last three years, and above all to improve it."
Seated beside Allegri at the news conference was Juventus general manager Beppe Marotta who stressed that Juve tried to convince Conte to stay.
"We tried in every way to keep him with us because we believe he is a winning coach, and he certainly was an important part of our strategy and success, so it was logical to try and keep him," said Marotta.
Allegri added that he was looking forward to steering Juventus to the latter stages of the Champions League, something Conte had not been able to achieve.
"I find it very exciting because to win the fourth league title in a row won't be easy, but I find it a challenge that motivates me a lot but the biggest challenge will be to play a great Champions League, he said.
There has been speculation that Allegri's arrival could cause friction with Andrea Pirlo after Allegri sold the gifted playmaker to Juve in 2011 while in charge of Milan, convinced that he could no longer play in his favoured position in front of the defence, but Allegri said they have an excellent relationship.
"The club, Andrea and I together made the decision that he would come to Juventus and I am lucky to be reunited with him after three years," he said.
"I've never had any problems with Andrea and I've never doubted his qualities, because I would have been mad to," the new coach added.
Marotta also took the opportunity to deny media speculation that Juve's Chilean midfielder Arturo Vidal would be moving.
"The future of Vidal? Well the fact is he's never been put on the market. He's a player that has been requested by many important clubs, but he's an important player on the team and we're keeping a tight hold on him," said Marotta.
Antonio Conte made the surprise announcement that he was leaving Juve on Tuesday (July 15) after winning three straight Serie A titles during his three years in charge.
The former midfielder could take the Italy manager's post left vacant by Cesare Prandelli, who stepped down as national team boss after a terrible World Cup campaign in which his side were eliminated following the group stage.
Allegri was sacked by Milan midway through last season after a dreadful start to the campaign that left them languishing in mid-table, and was replaced by Clarence Seedorf in January after more than a year of speculation surrounding his position.
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- Embargoed:31st July 2014 13:00