Andrea Pirlo: The perfect fit for Juventus?


On Saturday, Juventus broke the internet, in Italy at least, when they announced the sacking of Maurizio Sarri as head coach and the hiring of Andrea Pirlo - the man without an ounce of coaching experience on his CV, reports BBC.

Pirlo, accustomed to making 

headlines as a legendary player for, among others, Inter Milan, AC Milan and Juventus, is now making headlines as a manager when he hasn't even submitted his final thesis to be called a qualified coach.

It's one thing to have taken on the role of Juve's under-23 coach 10 days ago - a job without pressure - and quite another to take charge of Cristiano Ronaldo and company, while satisfying the obsessions of a side desperate for European success before the veterans retire.

Since Juventus lost the Champions League final to Real Madrid in 2017, things have become a little stale.

They introduced Cristiano Ronaldo to excite the world and promote the Juve brand, and yet Max Allegri's 2018-19 team looked more boring than ever.

They brought in Sarri and Juve did not only continue to be boring, but they were now without the warrior spirit.

Chairman Andrea Agnelli realised he needs to gamble. He felt Antonio Conte was a gamble that worked, while Allegri was the hated Milan coach and yet his arrival bought even more joy.

So perhaps Pirlo, the former Milan maestro and Juventus legend, could bring back the Juve soul that made the team so fun to watch in the earlier seasons of this dynasty.

Juventus have made it clear they want to continue promoting the Juventus brand - the Juve lifestyle if you wish - to bring in a steady revenue and they want sporting brilliance that won't require a revolution. The bearded hipster, who played football like a god, satisfies both requirements.

Everyone will tune into to watch the masterful Ronaldo under the guidance of the cool Pirlo, spending their hard earned cash on the merchandise this will surely produce and perhaps Pirlo's suggested pragmatism will finally get this collection of individuals to play as a team. We know so little about Pirlo as a coach that it's difficult to even predict.

Is this any more of a gamble than the decision to hire Sarri 14 months ago?

Sarri coached a beautiful Napoli side and had lifted the Europa League with Chelsea, but he was still a man with a specific style of play who valued the aesthetic.

As it transpired, the gamble won them one trophy, barely, and resulted in lots of Ronaldo eye rolls, a frustrated Leonardo Bonucci often calming Sarri down from the sidelines and endless criticism of the style of play. Sarri was truly a gamble and probably no more than Pirlo is.

However, the most important thing Pirlo needs to do is get his Juve to enjoy playing football again - this past season under Sarri has been long, tedious and overly difficult.

This is a team that should be enjoying the success they've managed, the brilliance of their various individuals and the friendships that exist all over the club. It's time to have fun playing the way Liverpool do, and the way 

Real Madrid have over the years, and maybe, just maybe, they can win some trophies too.