Year 1 of the Juventus Cristiano Ronaldo Experiment a failure? Part 2 #575

Negatives 

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Juventus for the better part of a decade in Italian football has won. They have dominated winning trophies in every season and in most years they have won multiple trophies. Before Cristiano Ronaldo made his exit from Real Madrid Juventus were coming off two appearances in the Champions League final over the last five years. On top of that, they won the league successively in every season in the last eight years. In most of those years, they have lifted the Coppa Italia almost on a regular basis. Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the best players in the world his impact on the team should have been enough to win everything. Juventus won less this season than before he arrived. You can’t fully blame either Juventus or Cristiano Ronaldo but both played Major roles in the failure to complete their mission of winning the Champions League. Cristiano Ronaldo is not aging very quickly he is still at the top of his game even in his mid-30s. However, it hasn’t been as productive this season as he has for the remaining nine years before that. There are so many ways to look at this and don’t get me wrong Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the greatest players in history and he is changing The Narrative of Aging in football but nonetheless, there have been some signs of very slight signs of deterioration. He is going to be at the top of his game for the contract and Italy but his age still could be concerning. Which means Juventus will have a great chance to win the Champions League over his tenure. But it would be blind to not acknowledge certain things. Juventus ran away with the league with little to no difficulty I don’t believe there was a title challenge at any point this season. You cannot fault Cristiano Ronaldo or Juventus for that but they benefited some dysfunctional teams and teams that changed in management. Roma AC Milan and Inter Milan all add separate issues. All three of these teams displayed some sort of this dysfunction for much of the season. From the very start of the year, these three teams were never really in a title challenge. Those are potentially three contenders that did not show up for the season. It made things a little bit easier for the league champions. AC Milan was indecisive and had all the momentum to do things but failed to deliver. Roma was probably the most inconsistent team in the entire league and Inter Milan was dealing with controversy in regards to Mauro Icardi and Wanda Icardi against Inter Milan and Luciano Spalletti. Then we have Napoli they were the closest to challenging even though that even didn’t last very long it was the first year of Carlo Ancelotti in charge of the team. He didn’t have time how to make his adjustments. All of the teams most qualified to challenge them for the throne fell on their face didn’t show up for the season. Making it incredibly simple for Juventus to run away with the league which is what they did. Given that entire situation, everything was in their hands for the Champions League. Due to the fact, the league seemed to be over very quickly they had all the power to win the Champions League. The one thing that they have missed over these last few years was Cristiano Ronaldo a player like that who can take them the distance. Cristiano Ronaldo at times was incredible in Europe but he wasn’t the Real Madrid Cristiano Ronaldo the Killer. You cannot give him enough credit for his performance against Atletico Madrid and he scored in both of the quarterfinal matches that ended up in their elimination. He did absolutely everything possible. However, if your that guys I just believe you could have found a way to break through. It’s not all the fault of Cristiano Ronaldo but his lack of goals in the Champions League contributed despite the fact he scored important goals. He went from 15 Champions League goals for Real Madrid last season to 6 goals in the Champions League for Juventus. Let’s break this down in other aspects he went from 44 goals 28 goals. He was not a top 3 goal scorer in the league finishing fourth. His impact was probably as great as it could be was able to deliver when it counted but may have just stepped out of the Leo Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo comparison. I do not think there is any question anymore that Leo Messi is the best player in the world. You can drag down some of those negative things that have happened to Leo Messi but based on impact and everything he has done Lionel Messi is the best player in the world today. It did not always use to be this way Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi used to be very close in that regard. You can make the argument that Leo Messi plays in the easier league but nonetheless he has pulled away slightly. To go along with this they got knocked out of the Coppa Italia after four consecutive doubles by Atalanta & Duvan Zapata who crushed them 3-0. Don’t get me wrong Cristiano Ronaldo was absolutely sensational in what he was brought here to do. Like I mentioned he did everything he could but must take some blame. Max Allegri is somewhat at fault as well Pablo Dybala the previous season was one of the best three players in the entire league. Max Allegri did not understand or have the ability to manage the star power Dybala became neutralized in the Juventus team and this team had issues defensively and some serious issues in the Midfield. Obviously, it was still a pretty great season given the fact that they won the league but they didn’t get a push for it everything was in their power to win the Champions League or at least get to the final. You can’t look at the season as a success. If this was any other team without question it’s would have been tremendously successful. But given the fact that Juventus win the double every season, you cannot view this as a huge success. Juventus will win the Champions League with Cristiano Ronaldo I truly believe that but this season can’t be looked at anything short of failure. It can be fixed like I said Cristiano Ronaldo’s aging very slowly but none the less he will continue to age I think he will be more or less as good as he was last season this coming season. He takes tremendous care of his body and I think he can be at this level the next several years. But even so, he won’t stay at this level forever Juventus have a window and it is closing a lot quicker than they may think.

 

 

Going Forward In Year 2

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There is currently a new regime at Juventus this season the goal has not changed through the expectations will remain the same until the goal is accomplished. A new coach new signings that will arrive did the possibility of trying to win it again. It won’t be like last season through last season was a window of opportunity that they didn’t take advantage of. They did not have any push from practically anyone in Italian football for the league title it gave them the window of opportunity to take advantage of the Champions League they failed. This season they have the opportunity to correct that but let me tell you something it’s not going to get any easier than it was last year. Everybody seems to be getting better. Atalanta the highest scoring team with the best player in the league last year, got more dangerous as they signed Luis Muriel. Meaning they will be more potent as they were a year ago. Inter Milan have signed Antonio Conte which means they just got a whole lot better. They will get very minimal signings but ones that will work in the system and make them incredibly difficult to beat. There was still be question mark surrounding AC Milan and Roma we just don’t know what’s going to happen with them or what we’re going to get. They will be a surprise or disappoint everyone. However, the scudetto might go to the team in Naples. This is Carlo Ancelotti second season as Napoli boss and he already has a team that is capable of winning the league and they got better. They have recently signed Kostas Manolas from Roma giving Koulibaly a-quality centre-back partner which will make their defense almost unbeatable. They also are likely to add James Rodriguez as they continue to add quality within the squad making them one of the favorites for the title. It might be tough for Juventus to win the league next season it will make things more difficult. Meaning they might make the decision to go full force for the Champions League. Juventus have hired Mauricio Sarri someone who is never won the league title. The priority might be on the Champions League I think it has to be. I’m not necessarily saying that that they won’t go for it in the league but they might have to make European football priority you have Cristiano Ronaldo in his prime they need to take advantage of every ounce of that. They added depth with Aaron Ramsey and several more signings will come with the likes of Christian Romero and others. They are now the favorites to sign Matthias Delight which will drastically improve their defensive issues. The new regime should also allow Paulo Dybala to be more of a figure within the team. They have to figure out how to play him with Cristiano Ronaldo he cannot be neutralized again for a second consecutive season. If you get to Paulo Dybala from 2 years ago you got a great chance. I don’t have all the answers but certain things need to change and even with these changes it’s still might be very difficult because everyone around them is getting better. They must buy into Sarri Ball if they do they could fix this if Juventus get this right I think they will be one of the favorites for the Champions League again. No matter what happens they need to figure out a way to make this work because we cannot be at the same place again a year from now. Juventus does not have time on their hands I’m not sure what needs to be done but the clock is ticking the time is now it is the time to take risks that you would not normally take Juventus have to be prepared to risk everything for the Champions League or else they won’t get it. The clock is ticking

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