• Allegri hails ‘future Juventus leader’ Bonucci

    Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci

    Clubs hoping to sign Leonardo Bonucci may be disappointed after Massimiliano Allegri anointed the Italy defender as “the future leader of the Juventus dressing room”.

    Bonucci is rumoured to be a target for the Chelsea side led by his former Juve and Italy boss Antonio Conte, as well as long-term admirer Pep Guardiola at Manchester City.

    The 30-year-old centre-back was dropped by Allegri for disciplinary reasons in the first leg of the Champions League round-of-16 tie against Porto in February, having argued with his coach on the touchline during a 4-1 Serie A victory over Palermo.

    “At that particular moment it was the right thing to do,” Allegri told Sky Italia.

    “There are times when you should turn a blind eye and times when you have to have your eyes wide open and in that moment Leo was wrong.

    “I was wrong too, and in fact I punished myself and Leo was left out. It was an important and decisive game [against Porto] and even if we’d lost we’d have had the strength to win 10 more.”

    Suitors planning to capitalise of any discord between player and coach could find themselves frustrated during the close-season, though, after Bonucci earned glowing praise from his boss.

    “We played a good game against Porto and then after two days Bonucci came back, because he’s an important player, an extraordinary player and above all he has to understand that he’ll be the future leader of the Juventus dressing room,” Allegri said.

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