Ronaldo the future but Juve need more to conquer Europe

first_imgA come-from-behind 2-1 win over Fiorentina was enough to give Juventus a 20-point lead on nearest rivals Napoli with five games to play.“The exit from the Champions League hurts, but this title says it all about what we managed to do — eighth in a row with five games to spare,” said Allegri.“Now let’s enjoy the party, then I’ll meet club management and we’ll talk and analyse what didn’t work this season.”The Italian club have overtaken French club Lyon for the record of consecutive victories in the top five European leagues.But again they have been unable to turn their domestic domination to Europe, winning their last Champions League title in 1996 and losing five finals since.The club spent 100 million euros ($117 million) on five-time Champions League winner Ronaldo last summer, hailing the 34-year-old record goal scorer as the missing piece in their jigsaw.But this season they won less than the previous campaign, lifting Serie A and the Italian SuperCup but ending their four-year Coppa Italia reign.Juventus have lost only two matches, against Genoa on March 17 and SPAL last weekend, when they could have won the title with a record six games to spare.The Juventus coach estimated that the title had been in the bag since February 2 when Paulo Dybala scored the only goal in a win over Bologna.“That success was crucial because it came at a delicate moment, caught between the challenge with Atletico Madrid and the direct clash of Naples,” said Allegri.The 51-year-old blamed “too many injuries and unforeseen events” and the players being unable to react to setbacks.In recent weeks the club has been hit by injuries to Dybala, defender Giorgio Chiellini, Sami Khedira, Mario Mandzukic, and Douglas Costa.– Evolution not revolution –The challenge next season for Allegri will be to find the right cast for Ronaldo.He scored six goals in the Champions League to bring his record tally to 126, including an incredible hat-trick against Atletico Madrid that lifted them into the quarter-finals, and is their leading scorer in Serie A with 19.Dybala, their top Serie A scorer last season with 22 goals, was overshadowed by Ronaldo scoring just five this campaign, with teenager Moise Kean bursting through during the Portuguese star’s injury absence.But while the forward line looks healthy the problems lie elsewhere.Can, Blaise Matuidi and Miralem Pjanic came up short often midfield, with the defence was at times leaky with goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny saving them from a heavier defeat against Ajax.Defender Chiellini, 34, is at the end of his playing career with Andrea Barzagli, 37, retiring at the end of the season.Allegri, who took over in the 2014-2015 season, and has won 11 trophies, insists there won’t be a revolution.Juventus’ Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo (C), his hair covered in foam, celebrates with (From L) Juan Cuadrado, Blaise Matuidi and Emre Can. © AFP / Marco Bertorello“There’s no point enacting a revolution,” said the Tuscan.“We have to improve the quality of our football and learn how to deal with unexpected events better, because those moments can change a tournament.“I might try a few players in different roles.“Paulo Dybala had a good season, especially up until January, because it was not easy to play along with Cristiano Ronaldo and Mario Mandzukic. Clearly, with Ronaldo by your side, you will play differently.”Arsenal’s Welsh midfielder Aaron Ramsey will arrive next summer while the club have also been targeting Ajax defender Matthijs De Ligt.Juventus’s final five matches will give Allegri plenty of room to experiment against Inter Milan, Torino, Roma, Atalanta and Sampdoria.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Cristiano Ronaldo is the first player to win the Premier League, La Liga and Serie A. © AFP / Marco BertorelloMILAN, Italy, Apr 21 – Massimiliano Allegri insisted that Cristiano Ronaldo was the future of Juventus and the Portuguese superstar said he was “1,000 percent committed to staying” but despite sealing an eighth consecutive Serie A title the Turin giants need to find more if they want to conquer Europe next season.Allegri’s side claimed an eighth consecutive Scudetto — the 35th in their history — on Saturday to help ease some of the pain of their shock Champions League quarter-final exit at the Juventus Stadium to Ajax on Tuesday.last_img read more

Raiders’ future rests with Gruden’s ability to assemble a roster

first_imgThe Ravens are nobody’s pick to make the Super Bowl, … If Jon Gruden the CEO doesn’t do a better job, then Jon Gruden the head coach has no chance.That’s the state of the Raiders with five games left in the season after absorbing a 34-17 road loss to the Baltimore Ravens in which the talent disparity was glaring in a league designed to reward parity and provide as much competition for the consumer as possible. Click HERE if you’re unable to view the gallery on your mobile device.last_img

Delhi to shut down on CWG opening day

first_imgA view of the figurines installed at the illuminated Commonwealth Games Village in New Delhi on Friday evening.You should stock all your daily supplies on Saturday as markets and shopping malls across the city have been ordered shut on Sunday, when Delhi hosts the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony.A Delhi government order on Friday – prompted by security concerns and worries over heavy traffic if the markets stayed open – said all shops and commercial establishments, including neighbourhood grocery stores, liquor shops, hair cutting salons, meat shops and malls, will remain closed.Shops at Connaught Place to be closed for opening ceremony.Police sources said security will be tight for the opening ceremony that required heavy deployment of forces across the city.This could mean few police personnel to guard public places.”The Delhi government has notified that all shops and commercial establishments in Delhi will remain closed on the day of the opening and closing ceremony (October 14) of the Commonwealth Games,” an official statement from chief minister Sheila Dikshit’s office read. The government exercised special powers under the Delhi Shops and Establishment Act of 1954 to order the shutdown. Violators could be issued a fine of Rs 250, the statement read.All big and small markets like those at Sarojini Nagar, Greater Kailash, Lajpat Nagar, Laxmi Nagar, Karol Bagh, Kamla Nagar, Rajouri Garden, and INA will be shut, as will be the DDA and MCD markets. However, chemists and grocery stores are expected to stay “partially open”. A senior official of the labour department said a notification for closure such as the one issued on Friday usually superseded all exemptions extended to chemists during special closures.advertisement”But we will not go after them since they offer an essential service,” the official said.The announcement caught several market associations off guard. Their representatives said they had not got official word on the closure till late on Friday. The announcement is likely to pose double-trouble for the shopkeepers and shoppers alike. The closure of shops and commercial establishments will extend to two consecutive days as October 2, Gandhi Jayanti, is a national holiday.Jagmohan Sethi, president of the Greater Kailash-I, M-Block market, said several markets, like the one he represents, will also be shut on October 2.But it will not be all dismal news on the day that the longawaited sporting extravaganza kicks off. Restaurants, movie halls, hotels, clubs and public amusement parks will stay open.Market associations said the government’s failure to issue specifics about the order was creating confusion. Manish Gupta of Greater Kailash-I, N-Block market association said the local police verbally told them to keep the market shut.”We don’t know whether it’s allowed but we will keep chemist and grocery stores in our market open for a few hours in the morning and evening,” he said.The Delhi Police had last month moved the proposal for shutting down the markets on October 3.Special commissioner of police (administration) Neeraj Kumar had written to chief secretary Rakesh Mehta on September 8.The police had argued that crowded market places that require heavy security cover had to be closed since police personnel will be diverted for the opening and closing ceremonies, said a senior government official who quoted from Kumar’s letter.While the opening and closing ceremonies for the Commonwealth Games will be held be held at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium in south Delhi, the police proposed a blanket closure across the city.Traders said the closures were upsetting because they come at a time when they register the highest sales. Gupta said monthly revenue could dip by at least 10 per cent because of the closure since the opening ceremony is on a Sunday.”The loss will be more since both the ceremonies are in the first fortnight of the month when people typically shop more since they have money to spend,” Gupta said.Bansi Lal Grover, president of the Sarojini Nagar market association, said traders would have to bear ” considerable loss”. “The government should have asked us to open the shops for late hours as there are a lot of guests in the city.” Vijay Budhiraja, president of the Kamla Nagar market association, said, “Some markets, like the ones at Kamala Nagar and Karol Bagh, will be affected because they have the heaviest rush of customers on Sunday.”last_img read more