Former Juventus star, Claudio Marchisio, has advised his old club to play Paulo Dybala further forward, suggesting that head coach Massimiliano Allegri is not making the most out the Argentine star’s potential.
The club’s former midfielder believes that the Messi’s teammate at national team level should be given a more advanced role to play rather than behind just to accommodate Ronaldo.
25-year-old Dybala put in 22 goals and five assists in 33 Serie A appearances for the Italian Serie A giants last season, helping the club secure a fourth consecutive Italian double and seventh successive league title.
But the story has been different in this 2018-19 campaign, which has seen Dybala forced to play in a deeper role to accommodate Cristiano Ronaldo. Juventus splashed the cash to bring in the prolific Portuguese striker from reigning European champions Real Madrid last summer and since then he has taken over as Juve’s focal point going forward, scoring 24 goals in 36 games in all competitions.
But Marchisio, who played for Juventus for 25 years in total before moving to Zenit Saint Petersburg back in September, says it is a “shame” to see his old team-mate having to play further away from goal.
Marchisio told Gazzetta dello Sport: “Paulo has an innate gift, it’s a shame to see him playing so far from the goal,” Marchisio said about the Argentine’s situation at the club. “I remember his first match with Juventus; Super Cup v Lazio, he came in and I said ‘stay in the opponent’s area’, and he scored goals.”
Dybala has once again been an essential cog in Allegri’s starting XI this term, but his overall record of nine goals in 35 appearances across all competitions represents a modest return when compared to his exploits the previous season.
Juventus meanwhile are on course to win another domestic double this season. An eight successive Serie A title is all but wrapped up while having a quarter-final tie against Ajax Amsterdam in the UEFA Champions League to look forward to in April.
Marchisio also went on to admit that he regrets how his time in Turin ultimately ended, revealing his original desire was to remain with the club for at least one more year. “August 17, the adventure came to an end, but the market was closing and I thought I would stay,” he added. “The club decided to terminate the contract, for me it wasn’t easy.”
The veteran midfield player continued: “With hindsight we could say there have been so many injuries in midfield, maybe I would have had room [to play]. But it would have been wrong to stay, I would not have managed another year like the last one. I was hoping for some more opportunities, but I always put the group in front of the individual.
He added: “I gave so much but Juventus also gave me so much. I’ve no regrets. In football, as in life and in love, there are so many ways to end stories. In the end, I consider myself lucky for what I had. I lost two Champions League finals but I’m happy to have won seven Scudettos.”
Marchisio also revealed he rejected two offers from AC Milan during his career, while he was full of praise for Ronaldo and the impact he’s had in Turin. “I have twice rejected offers from Milan,” he said.
He added: “So many offers have always arrived, both from abroad and from Italy. For me, the most important team in Italy, besides Juve, has always been Milan. But I would never have gone to another Italian club. He [Ronaldo] works a lot, he takes care of every aspect of preparation. He is an example. He has an atypical physique for a soccer player, he looks more like a sprinter!”
The Bianconeri return to Serie A action after the international break, with a home clash against Empoli on March 30 before a trip to Cagliari three days later. Allegri’s men will be looking to bounce back from a shock 2-0 loss suffered at Genoa last time out.