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2-min read

Fiorentina Offer Tantalising Glimpse of True Potential in Victory Over Juventus

Fiorentina's performance in the 2-1 win over Serie A leaders Juventus on Sunday offered their fans a tantalising glimpse of what they are capable of when they put their minds to it.

Reuters

Updated:January 16, 2017, 4:53 PM IST
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Fiorentina Offer Tantalising Glimpse of True Potential in Victory Over Juventus
Fiorentina players celebrate after their victory over Juventus in the Serie A (Reuters Photo)

Milan: Fiorentina's performance in the 2-1 win over Serie A leaders Juventus on Sunday offered their fans a tantalising glimpse of what they are capable of when they put their minds to it.

The Violets outplayed their opponents, exposing weaknesses in Juve's much-vaunted "BBC" defence of Andrea Barzagli, Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini, with a display worthy of title contenders rather than a team stuck in eighth place.

Coach Paulo Sousa appeared to realise as much as anyone that his team, who produced a similarly inspired display last month to draw 3-3 with third-placed Napoli, need to make such performances the rule rather than the exception.

"It's never too late to do the right thing," he told reporters. "We need the quality of our best players to play well.

"Every match should be the match with the capital 'M' as far as Fiorentina are concerned," he added. "With this sort of commitment, nearly every team would have trouble beating us. My team should not wait, they should play football."

The potential is clearly there with players such as mercurial striker Nikola Kalinic and Federico Bernardeschi, one of Italy's brightest hopes for the future, playing just behind him.

Yet too often this season Fiorentina's play has been sterile, so much so that the amiable Sousa's own future has been called into question.

The former Juventus and Borussia Dortmund player, who took over 18 months ago, has had a hit-and-miss managerial career, although he has gradually worked his way upwards.

He began at Queen's Park Rangers, in the English second tier, but was sacked after six months after the club said he had divulged sensitive information.

He spent the 2009-10 season at Swansea City, once again in the Championship, and just missed out on the playoffs before moving to Leicester City where he was fired after three months.

That was followed by 18 months at Videoton in Hungary and one season at Maccabi Tel Aviv where he won the Israeli league title at the first attempt.

He also spent a season at Swiss side Basel, enjoying a famous Champions League victory over Liverpool and again winning the domestic title.

Less pragmatic than some of his fellow Portuguese coaches, the 46-year-old likes his teams to dominate possession.

“My team does not play according to the opposition. We have a clear structure and our own ideas," he said.

"I always try to work on determination and ambition, both at an individual and collective level, because we have to train our minds to be successful."

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| Edited by: Arnab Sen
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