There has been widespread criticism of the Bianconeri board and its directors yet there are some obvious aspects which have been overlooked by the reporters and fans alike. The Juve management has actually erred in allowing Pavel Nedved to retire, in hiring Cirro Ferrara to lead the team and in their choice of players brought in to Turin.
The board seems to have acknowledged making some of the mistakes and this is precisely why they rushed to bring back Roberto Bettega. The shrewd director has plenty of experience which equals if not surpasses the whole management team’s experience as a package put together! Unfortunately the presence of Alessio Secco and Jean-Claude Blanc in Vinovo does not bode well for the Bianconeri fans. The two have been nothing short of a disaster since joining the club in their respective roles. Secco deserves much of the criticism for his role in bringing in some unqualified players or over paying for others. On the other hand, Blanc seems to lack the charisma and does not have the knowledge required to head a club of Juve’s stature. Blanc was in charge of Roland Garros (French Open) as well as the Paris Master Series which are tennis tournaments prior to joining the Bianconeri. He has not previous experience in football.
Moving the focus onto some of the players recruited by Juventus, it is quite clear many if not most of them are below the customary Juve standards. Even the hard working and continuously running Mohamed Sissoko was bought from Liverpool at a relatively high asking price as the fee paid was €11 million. The Anfield outfit wanted to offload the midfielder and were quite happy to do so for such a sum. No doubt Sissoko has worked hard in Turin but considering his plethora of injuries and his inability to pass the ball, the amount paid was a bit too much. Sissoko was not a bad signing when compared to the disastrous purchase of Portuguese flop Tiago and Danish midfielder Christian Poulsen. Those two midfielders came at a hefty price with Poulsen costing €9.75 million.
In attack the current management signed Brazilian Amauri who after a bright start to his career with the club has become sort of a liability and cannot seem to buy a goal at this time. The club also signed two Brazilians Diego and Felipe Melo with each player costing the club in excess of €24 million (Melo cost around €20.5 million plus Marco Marchionni). While Diego clearly has the talent to succeed, he has suffered due to high expectations and the lack of proper players around him who are suited to his game. Diego’s strong and impressive start to the season did not help because it placed added pressure on his shoulders. On the other hand, Melo has been misused by Coach Ferrara but has also performed inconsistently and is not an upgrade when compared to Sissoko. Thus, the Juve management wasted close to €25 million to get a player who is in fact not better than Sissoko and what makes the situation even worse is the fact both players do not seem to be compatible on the pitch due to their inability to pass the ball.
The latest market disasters were the recall of Yago Falque and the return of Michele Paolucci (never represented the Juve first-team before his recent return to the club despite being on the club’s book from 2004 to 2006). Clearly the previous management in Turin did not believe in Paolucci or else he would not have been loaned to Ascoli. As for Yago he is still quite young to be able to help the club in a period of crisis. To add insult to injury, the club chose to get Antonio Candreva on loan for the remainder of the season. The young midfielder appears to be a quality player with a bright future but considering his limited experience, is he the appropriate type of player to help a club of Juve’s status emerge from such a deep crisis?
Without delving into details, the management made grave mistakes by hiring then firing Claudio Ranieri and then eventually announcing Ciro Ferrara as his permanent replacement. Both were the wrong choice for various reasons. The Bianconeri fans are wondering what is in store for the club and will there be more disasters before qualified individuals are brought in to steady the ship and bring back the glory days to Turin?