Turin - Maurizio Sarri said his appointment as Juventus coach was "the
crowning" moment of his 30-year managerial career as the former Chelsea
manager was presented by the Serie A giants in Turin on Thursday.
The 60-year-old returns to Italy after just one turbulent season in
the Premier League with Chelsea, having previously coached his hometown
team Napoli for three seasons.
Juventus is the 20th team that Sarri has coached since the former
banker took over at Stia, a team in the Italian eighth division back in
"The offer of Juve, the most important team in Italy, is the crowning
of a very long career, which for 80 percent of the time has been quite
difficult," Sarri told a press conference at the Allianz Stadium in
Sarri, decked out in a Juventus team suit and tie rather than his
usual tracksuit, was asked if he would adapt to the Juventus style.
"I don't know what the Juventus style is," said the Neapolitan who once famously gave the middle finger to some Juventus fans.
"Suit and tie or tracksuit? I have to talk to the club.
"I would prefer not to wear the suit and tie on the pitch. The
important thing is that at my age, they don't send me out naked onto the
Despite his long coaching career Sarri only lifted his first trophy
last month when he guided Chelsea to the Europa League trophy.
"From an emotional point of view, it was a very long path through the lower divisions and then Serie A and then Premier League.
"It has been step after step in a gradual way, a very long process."
Chelsea was the only time Sarri has coached outside of Italy but he
failed to win over the English fans despite returning the club to the
Champions League with a third-placed finish in the Premier League and
winning the Europa League.
"The Premier League was a great experience, but in the latter half
(of the season), I felt professional and personal needs to return to
Italy," he said.
"I decided to come back to Italy because such an important club wanted me so strongly.
"I have never seen so much determination on the part of a club to hire a coach."
'Best coach for Juventus'
Sarri takes over from Massimiliano Allegri, who led Juventus to an eighth consecutive Scudetto title.
"He was absolutely the first choice," said Juventus sporting director Fabio Paratici of Sarri.
"We chose Maurizio because we felt he was the best coach for Juventus
right now, just as Allegri was five years ago and (Antonio) Conte three
years before that,"
"Sarri showed he can win in the Premier League and internationally, so he's the right man for the job.
Alegri paid the price for another Champions League failure despite Cristiano Ronaldo's 100-million-euro ($115 million) signing.
Sarri said he was relishing the chance to coach five-time Ballon d'Or winner Ronaldo.
"I coached some very strong players, but training him will be yet another step forward," he said.
"I'd like to help him break some new records."
The Champions League is the top target for Juventus who have not won the European title since 1996.
"At European level we have this dream, this target we have to pursue
with great determination but also great difficulty," he said.
"Juventus will start with the target of winning the Champions League
but with the knowledge there are another eight or nine clubs that can
The former Empoli coach said that he would try to prove his critics wrong once again.
"I arrive surrounded by skeptics, but then I always am. I had the same at Empoli, Napoli and Chelsea.
"In football, I know only one way of removing skepticism from the minds of people by winning convincingly.
"I haven't won a lot, but I believe that having fun on the pitch doesn't stop you winning.
"You can't think that just because a team is having fun they are superficial and not determined."