Safety is Juventus crisis club’s top target as Allegri aims for 40 points

    Massimiliano Allegri says Juve’s main goal is to score 40 points and secure a place in Serie A next season, and their 15-point deduction seems to dash any hopes of a top-four finish.

    Juventus were seen as one of the teams capable of challenging Napoli leaders before an investigation into their historic transfer deals led to them being sanctioned last month.

    With just one point in their last three league games, Juventus are now 13th in the table, 10 points ahead of the bottom three but 15 points behind fourth-placed Lazio.

    Speaking ahead of Tuesday’s trip to 16th-place Salernitana to beat the Bianconeri with a win, Allegri was cautious when asked about his hopes for the remainder of the campaign.

    “Right now the fact is they took 15 points and we have to think about getting 40 to save ourselves,” Allegri said.

    “It’s funny, but we must first think about this goal and move forward step by step. Setting goals for yourself is now unthinkable.

    “Now we have to get to the teams ahead of us and slowly climb up. Tomorrow we have to win, because in the last three games of the championship we scored only one point.

    Juve will once again be without Paul Pogba at Salerno after a minor injury delayed his second Bianconeri debut and Leonardo Bonucci also pulled out with a bout of flu.

    Everyone is available except Bonucci, who has been sick with the flu for three days, Pogba, as before, and [Leandro] Paredes has a leg injury and will be gone,” he said. “Everyone else is present.

    Juve will likely need striker Dusan Vlahovic to get back in top form if they want to move up the table as he continues to pursue his first goal in 2023.

    Vlahovic has failed to score in his two matches since returning from the World Cup with a groin injury, with his last club goal coming at neighbors Torino’s home in mid-October.

    Thus, the Serbian international scored each of his last eight Serie A goals in Turin (seven at the Allianz Stadium and one at the Olimpico Grande Turin), and the last goal scored outside the city in a victory over Cagliari in April last year.

    Asked if the striker will start on Tuesday, Allegri said: “I haven’t decided yet, but I’ll give the scores. Physically, he is fine, he is much lighter and more dynamic than when he arrived.

    “Let’s hope he scores tomorrow. Vlahovic has never been as good physically as he is now, even when he came from Fiorentina.

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