The Juventus Road To Destruction Almost Complete With Alberto Zaccheroni Appointment

Posted on 05/02/2010


Carlo Garganese thought he had seen it all at Juventus since Calciopoli, but the incompetence of the management has just descended to a new low following the decision to appoint Alberto Zaccheroni as interim coach…

What has happened to the great Juventus?

The demise of Italy’s most successful club is fast becoming a twenty-first century version of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. All the Bianconeri players and fans are being led down a road of destruction by a group of incompetent pipe-playing directors.

With the plague engulfing Turin the Pied Piper’s latest tune, rather than drive away the rats, has instead attracted yet another one. The rat’s name? 
Alberto Zaccheroni.

While it is true that 
Juventus had very few coaches to turn to as replacement for Ciro Ferrara, it is astonishing that Jean Claude Blanc, the Elkanns, and all the decision-makers, genuinely believe that Zaccheroni is the saviour.

This is a coach who has been unable to find a job since February 2007 when he was sacked by Torino. The 56-year-old’s spell with the Granata lasted less than half a year. Prior to Torino, Zaccheroni had also been unemployed for two years.;tile=4;sz=160×600;ord=721215?area=2l&pos=2&

Thus, Juventus are pinning their hopes on a coach who has only been in work for 
five months of the last five-and-a-half years

It belies belief, doesn’t it?

Now let’s talk tactics. Zaccheroni’s preferred formation is a 3-4-3, and he champions the use of a trident attack. Take a look at Juventus’ squad. Where are the wide players? Sebastian Giovinco and Mauro Camoranesi can occupy the winger roles, but they are both currently injured. Vincenzo Iaquinta, also a long-term absentee, is a less natural option. Antonio Candreva could perhaps improvise too. In simple terms, the Bianconeri don’t have the squad to suit Zaccheroni’s favourite system.

And what about Diego? The Brazilian can’t play in a 3-4-3 or 4-3-3. So unless Zaccheroni employs a 3-4-1-2 as he did with Milan in the latter stages of 1998/99 and uses Diego in the Zvonimir Boban/Leonardo hole, then there will be no room for the trequartista. And if Zaccheroni uses a three man backline, do Juve have enough quality centre backs?
Juventus have changed formation enough this season without Zaccheroni implementing another wacky scheme that the squad don’t even have the players to adapt to.

Most critics will argue that Zaccheroni is a coach of yesterday. On top of the aforementioned ‘five months in five-and-a-half years’, the tactician’s track record over the past 10 years is pretty dire. Despite also coaching Milan, Inter and Lazio, he won no silverware last decade and never came even remotely close. He will be best remembered for the humiliating 5-1 home defeats suffered by Inter and Lazio to Arsenal and Roma respectively.

As’s Lazio expert Stefano Federici points out, “He won the Scudetto thanks to some extremely controversial refereeing and has been living in the shadow of his one and only success ever since.”

This one and only success arrived in 1999 when a very ordinary Milan side somehow overhauled a far superior Lazio team to the post in a season when an Alessandro Del Piero-less 
Juventus were in disarray following the departure of Marcello Lippi.

The days when Zaccheroni was a respected coach are long gone. Indeed, Zac has not been high up in my estimations since his time at Udinese between 1995-98 when the Zebrette played a sparkling brand of football led by the attacking trident of Paolo Poggi, Marcio Amoroso and Oliver Bierhoff. Zac led Udinese to a magnificent third-place finish in 1998, which turned Silvio Berlusconi’s head.

Zaccheroni’s job between now and the end of the season, when he will be replaced by a big name permanent coach such as Rafa Benitez or Marcello Lippi, is to ensure that Juventus finish in the top four and qualify for the Champions League. 

Anything less will be a complete disaster, but I am not at all confident that the Meldola-born boss will achieve this objective. Indeed, it wouldn’t surprise me if Zaccheroni is flushed out before the end of the season, and the Pied Pipers of Vinovo lure out another rat.
What are your views on this topic? Do you agree that Alberto Zaccheroni is a bad appointment? Or do you think he is the right man?