Giorgio Chiellini urges Juventus not to focus their full attention on Romelu Lukaku when they face Chelsea on Wednesday, also highlighting the qualities of Jorginho, whom he supports to win this year’s Ballon d’Or.
Juve started their Champions League campaign two weeks ago with a 3-0 win over Malmö, although they expect a more delicate challenge as Chelsea travel to Turin on Matchday 2.
The contest will see Chiellini resume hostilities with Lukaku, their couple having experienced deadly fights during the Belgian’s stint in Serie A with Inter.
But the Chelsea player Chiellini seems to have the highest regard for is Jorginho, a player he featured alongside Italy who won Euro 2020 earlier this year.
That success, coupled with Chelsea’s Champions League victory in 2020-21, saw Jorginho take home the UEFA Male Player of the Year award in August, and Chiellini believes he deserves a shot as well. add the Ballon d’Or to its collection.
Asked about the prospect of facing Lukaku again, Chiellini said: “Lukaku is a great player, we will have to be careful.
“It will be important not to let go of the qualities of champions like Lukaku. He is a great player, for whom they have paid dearly. He is not there by chance, but it is perhaps a little decreasing from only talk about my meeting. and Lukaku – it’s not just Lukaku.
“Chelsea have many champions: let’s think of our great friend Jorginho, who is the ‘flagship’ of this team.
“I really hope he can win the Golden Ball because he’s a good friend of mine and it’s also a prize that would make it feel like mine as an Italian and a player involved in the [Euro 2020] to win.”
Jorginho hasn’t always had it easy at Chelsea, with many critics skeptical of his suitability for the club and English football in general, but Chiellini believes he has outlived both Maurizio Sarri and Frank Lampard in Stamford Bridge.
“I always thought he was a good player but after two or three sessions for the national team under [Roberto] Mancini, I realized how good he is, “Chiellini continued.
“What a top player he is. He might not have great physical qualities, but the real difference is in his head, his mentality, and I was really happy because many said he couldn’t play. than with Sarri.
“Instead, two more coaches came to Chelsea and then to the national team. Wherever he goes he plays like a regular so I’m happy for him and he really deserves an award, so I really hope that he will win the Ballon d’Or. “
Juve coach Massimiliano Allegri has been asked about the form of his own midfielders, especially Adrien Rabiot.
The Frenchman has only impressed with spells since arriving from Paris Saint-Germain two years ago and Allegri clearly wants more – although he is adamant Rabiot has the ability to improve.
“It’s similar to [Federico] Bernardeschi, “said Allegri.” The difference between the players is when they come to Juve – if a big club chooses them, obviously there is a reason, but the difference in their career depends on the mentality, on the their specific goal of helping the team and the ability to improve, to be determined in training sessions, to score, to defend.
“Those are the things that make the difference. How many good technical players haven’t been able to explode in their careers because maybe something was missing?
“Rabiot is a player, if I were him I would be very angry with myself because he is a player who has been here for two years, how many goals has he scored? Ten [six] in two seasons? It’s not acceptable. He has to improve to get a lot better and I’m pretty sure he’ll be able to do it this year. “