Juventus manager, Maurizio Sarri, has hit back at Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp and his suggestion that the Turin side are Champions League favourites.
The Italian giants are currently top of Serie A and have one of the most talented squads in world football. Led by Cristiano Ronaldo, Juve also have the likes of Dybala, Rabiot, and De Ligt on their books.
And Reds manager Klopp had previously claimed Juventus should be favourites for the Champions League.
The Liverpool boss claimed he ‘couldn’t understand‘ why Sarri’s men weren’t top of the league by more than ten points while admitting he didn’t watch enough Italian football.
However, Sarri has not hit back at Klopp, accusing him of trying to take the heat off his own team.
“Jurgen also said that he doesn’t watch much Italian football, so that explains his confusion!“, Sarri said. (Goal)
“Jurgen is one of the smartest and funniest people I’ve ever known and what he’s doing here is shaking off the burden of being the favourites for the Champions League.”
Liverpool faces Atletico Madrid in the next round of the tournament. As holders, they will, naturally, be the scalp everyone in the competition wants to take.
Juventus, meanwhile, face a tricky tie against French giants, Lyon.
Manager mind-games – TBR View
Both Klopp and Sarri are experienced campaigners within the game and both know what they are doing here.
The chance to gain any slight mental advantage is bound to be taken. Klopp knows his team are expected to go deep into the tournament again. Sarri, meanwhile, is also under pressure to do well given his Juventus squad.
In fairness to Klopp, though, he does have a point. Juventus have a talent-ridden squad who most other teams should be jealous of.
Cristiano Ronaldo just keeps on going and is still as good as anyone in world football as a striker.
If Juventus don’t make it past Lyon, then Sarri will have indeed failed on one big aspect of their season.