After pursuing Athletic Bilbao striker Fernando Llorente for a long time, Juventus finally managed to sign the striker in the summer on a free transfer from the Spanish club. He agreed to move to the Italian club back in January itself.
However, the move to the Italian champions has not been a smooth transition for the Spaniard, who has struggled to hold down a first-team spot at the club. He has also failed to score a league goal up until the weekend’s match against Hellas Verona. In the match against Hellas Verona, Llorente finally scored his first goal for Juventus.
The lack of goals from the striker has been a concern for manager Antonio Conte, who did not use him even when Juventus were chasing the game against FC Copenhagen in the Champions league midweek action a few days ago.
In fact, Llorente has found first-team opportunities limited for the last year or so ever since he became a contract rebel at Athletic Bilbao. He scored less than 10 goals for the Spanish club last season, and it appears that he is still a long way off from becoming the feared striker. Conte has said that the goal from Llorente is a major boost for his confidence, and he hopes that the Spaniard makes use of this confidence to build on.
“Fernando did well, he can do better, this goal will certainly boost his confidence and that of all of us who worked hard to get him back into shape. It was planned that he would play one of the three games this week. I chose Verona, as we were on home turf and the fans could help him. We cannot afford to think there are players who can’t be dropped. We play every three days, they need to rest and squad rotation is essential, so soon enough Carlos Tevez will also be rested,” said Conte.