The European failure of the Italian Juventus, who was early bid farewell to the group stage in the European Champions League in football, is a new blow to Andrea Agnelli, the dreamy president of the Super League, but who is immersed in sports, financial and judicial turmoil.
Agnelli is still campaigning, with Spain’s Real Madrid and Barcelona, for a new special tournament among Europe’s elite clubs that aims to topple the Champions League.
But the equivalent continental championship, the “Europe League”, is calling for Juventus at the moment, in the best case, in the event that it maintains a third place in a group that qualified for Paris Saint-Germain and Benfica of Portugal, as it equals the number of points with the Israeli Maccabi Haifa “4”, before a round at the end of the group stage. .
The newspaper “Corriere Daily Sport” summarized: Juventus are in hell, in harmony with the Italian press, which indicated the failure of the “Bianconeri” (black and white), to occupy the runner-up, at least, behind Paris Saint-Germain.
With a new defeat against Benfica 3-4, this elimination was expected after a disastrous track that saw four record losses in five Champions League matches.
The exclusion confirms the European decline of a club that has reached the final nine times and won twice, after losing the final price in the past three seasons against middleweight opponents such as Lyon, Porto and Villarreal of Spain, and this is the first time Juventus has been eliminated from the group stage since the 2013-2014 season. .
Despite the “disgrace” of losing against its host Maccabi Haifa 0-2 on October 11, Agnelli renewed his confidence in coach Massimiliano Allegri, who led the team to winning the Serie A title between 2015 and 2019 and returning in 2021 after two short periods to Maurizio Sarri and then Andrea Pirlo.
The president sticks to a policy of not judging the coach before the season ends, as he did starting in 2010. But this has not reduced the level of criticism against Allegri, as his team is currently eighth in the league, ten points behind leaders Napoli.
Apart from the coach, the transfer strategy did not bring the hoped for, as French midfielders Paul Poga and Argentine Angel Di Maria were injured.
And if the price of giving up Allegri will be high, given that it is linked to a contract until 2025, the media began to focus on the potential losses due to the current weak performance.
The exclusion from the Champions League will constitute a missed profit of about 20 million euros, according to “Calcho e Finanza”, and the absence from the next edition, if the solutions among the top four fail in the current season, will deprive the “old lady” of gains that may reach seventy million euros that he won. Last season.
“Who pays for the damage?”, headline the Tuttosport newspaper, criticizing the “spend of 175 million euros” annually on players and coach.
While the club aims to settle its financial accounts, it has faced negative numbers in the past five years and lost 225 million euros last season: a record deficit in Italian football, and it committed with the European Union for the game “UEFA” to comply with the rules of financial fair play.
According to Quotidiano Sportivo, Juventus is paying the price of the “race with the giants”, especially with the introduction of Portuguese Cristiano Ronaldo “2018-2021” in a big deal that cast a shadow over the accounts.
The club had to be more creative to control its deficit, doubled the “false exchange” of players, including transfers with other clubs, without financial exchange but allowing data improvement, these practices were subject to investigation by the Italian judiciary.
In conclusions sent to concerned people, including President Agnelli, the Public Prosecution Office in Turin estimated the “imaginary” numbers at 155 million euros between 2018 and 2021, according to the media.
The club, whose shares are listed on the stock exchange, hid private contracts with players, including Ronaldo, from investors, to settle some deferred salaries.
As with opening the investigation in 2021, Juventus reiterated that it acted in accordance with the laws and regulations governing financial reporting.
The judiciary must now decide whether to hold President Agnelli and other officials to account.