Juventus will be without Juan Cuadrado for their Champions League round-of-16 clash with Tottenham Hotspur after the Colombian winger was ruled out for at least two months due to injury.
Cuadrado is due to undergo surgery in Munich on a troublesome adductor injury which will leave him sidelined until at least the start of April, if not beyond.
He has missed the Bianconeri’s past four Serie A fixtures with the injury, although head coach Massimiliano Allegri says no replacement will be drafted in over the final 48 hours of the transfer window.
“Our squad will remain the same even if Cuadrado will be out for a long time,” Allegri said at a news conference on Monday
Juve will face in-form Atalanta over two legs for the right to defend the Coppa Italia title they have won in each of the past three seasons and Allegri does not expect it to be easy.
“Atalanta have become a very tough team in our league and they deserve a lot of credit as does their manager, Gian Piero Gasperini, he is an adversary to be respected,” he said. “They are doing very well in Europe, in the league and also in the cup, and they have some excellent youngsters.
“Playing in Bergamo is always complicated, we will need to be spot on with our balance, tactics and technique. It’s a cup match and it’s 180 minutes, so we need to score on the road to take a lead to Turin.
“The Coppa Italia remains an important objective of ours along with the Champions League and Serie A. It’s a competition that shouldn’t be downplayed, we don’t play for a thousand trophies but for three: Serie A, Coppa Italia and Champions League. We always want to get to the final in Rome.
“It’s in Juve’s DNA to have the desire to win every day. Our next goal is to set us up well for the return leg. Then we will think about the league and the Champions League, getting to another final would be a great result, but first we have to think about going to Bergamo.”
Ben Gladwell reports on Serie A, the Italian national team and the Bundesliga for ESPN FC, UEFA and the Press Association. @UEFAcomBenG.