Sunday, November 28, 2021

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‘Thank you, Andrea’ – Juventus sack Pirlo

Juventus have sacked Andrea Pirlo as manager after the Italian spent just one season in charge of the club.

The 42-year-old was a surprise choice to replace Maurizio Sarri last summer and under his guidance Juventus failed to win the Serie A title for the first time since 2012.

The Turin-based club finished fourth, only qualifying for the Champions League on the last day of the season. They however won the Coppa Italia, beating Atalanta 2-1 to salvage an underwhelming campaign.

A statement on the Juventus website said: “Thanks Andrea. These are the first words that all of us must pronounce at the end of this special experience lived together.

“For the courage, the dedication, the passion with which he demonstrated every day, our thanks go to the ‘Maestro’, the coach and to Andrea, that really comes from the heart, as well as our good luck for the future that will surely be a wonderful one.”

Pirlo added: “It’s been an intense, complicated year but still wonderful. When I got the call from Juventus, I never thought about the risk I was taking.

“If I had to go back, I would make the exact same choice again, although aware of all the obstacles I encountered in such a difficult time for everyone, which prevented me from better planning my intentions and my style of play.

“This adventure, despite an unexpected ending, made it even clearer what I would like my future to be, which I hope will be just as complete and fulfilling as the one I experienced as a player.”

Ex-manager Massimiliano Allegri is expected to return for a second spell at the Turin giants.

Allegri was in charge of Juventus from 2014-19, winning five successive league titles and reaching the Champions League final twice.

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