Kean not Ronaldo replacement as Juventus turn to future – Cherubini

By Sports Desk September 09, 2021

Juventus sporting director Federico Cherubini insisted Moise Kean is not Cristiano Ronaldo's replacement, rather "one of the pawns in a plan to continue winning with a different project".

Ronaldo left Juve before the transfer window closed, re-joining Premier League giants Manchester United after asking for a move away from Turin.

After Ronaldo departed Juve, the Serie A powerhouse – who were dethroned by Inter in 2020-21 – brought Kean back to the club from Everton on a two-year loan with an obligation to buy.

"When Cristiano told us he wanted to leave, we immediately thought of anticipating the future," Cherubini told Tuttosport in an interview that will be published in full on Friday.

"Kean is not the replacement of the Portuguese striker, but one of the pawns in a plan to continue winning with a different project."

During his time at Allianz Stadium, Ronaldo scored 101 goals across 134 matches in all competitions.

Ronaldo topped the goalscoring charts with 29 Serie A goals last season but Juve finished fourth in Andrea Pirlo's first campaign at the helm.

Pirlo was sacked as a result, with Juve turning to former head coach Massimiliano Allegri, who have only collected one point from their opening two fixtures of the 2021-22 season.

Related items

  • Inter's Marotta dismisses interest in Fiorentina star Vlahovic Inter's Marotta dismisses interest in Fiorentina star Vlahovic

    Inter CEO Giuseppe Marotta downplayed interest in Dusan Vlahovic as clubs reportedly queue up to sign the Fiorentina star.

    Vlahovic is set to leave Fiorentina after opting against signing a new deal in Florence, with the Serbia international's current contract expiring in June 2023.

    The 21-year-old has been linked to Serie A champions Inter, Juventus, Premier League holders Manchester City, Manchester United, Bundesliga winners Bayern Munich, LaLiga titleholders Atletico Madrid, Tottenham and Arsenal.

    Marotta was asked about Inter's rumoured interest in the in-demand forward.

    "He is a talent, I know there is a conflictual situation with Fiorentina, but I hope they can solve their issues," Marotta said.

    "However, we have a good mix of young and experienced players in that department."

    Vlahovic has 28 Serie A goals in 2021 – no Fiorentina player has ever scored so many goals in a calendar year in the Italian top flight.

    Only Bayern talisman Robert Lewandowski has netted more in the top five European leagues this year.

    Vlahovic is also the third Fiorentina player to score at least 11 goals in the season's opening 14 Serie A matches since 2000.

  • Ballon d'Or: Messi wants to see Lewandowski rewarded for 2020 exploits Ballon d'Or: Messi wants to see Lewandowski rewarded for 2020 exploits

    Ballon d'Or 2021 winner Lionel Messi has said that runner-up Robert Lewandowski deserved a Ballon d'Or of his own for his exploits last year.

    Messi claimed the coveted award for a record-extending seventh time on Monday, while Bayern Munich forward Lewandowski won the inaugural Striker of the Year award and finished second in the Ballon d'Or voting.

    The Paris Saint-Germain superstar has enjoyed a superb but bittersweet calendar year, highlighted by finally leading Argentina to success on the international stage with a Copa America victory in which he was both the tournament's top scorer and top assister.

    He then returned to Barcelona expecting to sign a new deal, but the club's financial situation made it impossible.

    In 40 club appearances this year between both Barca and PSG, Messi has managed an impressive 32 goals and 12 assists and was handed the gong by former team-mate Luis Suarez.

    Lewandowski, meanwhile, continued the magnificent form he had displayed across 2020, when he led Bayern to a treble only for last year's edition of the award to be cancelled amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

    The 33-year-old scored 41 Bundesliga goals to break Gerd Muller's 49-year-old record while, so far in 2021, Lewandowski has netted 53 times in 42 appearances, the most of any player in Europe's top five leagues across all competitions. 

    Erling Haaland, his nearest challenger, is 15 back on 38. Lewandowski has averaged a goal every 67 minutes. Among those with 10 goals or more, club-mate Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting is the next most regular scorer, netting every 84 minutes.

    "[Lewandowski], you deserve your Ballon d'Or," Messi said upon receiving the award. "Last year, everyone was in agreement to say that you were the big winner.

    "Hopefully [France Football] give you the Ballon d’Or 2020."

    Lewandowski sent his congratulations to the Ballon d'Or winners and nominees on social media, while thanking his teammates and fans for their support in helping him claim the Striker of the Year award.

    "Congratulations Leo Messi and [Women's Ballon d'Or winner] Alexia Putellas, winners of the Ballon d'Or 2021, congratulations also to all nominated players," Lewandowski wrote on social media.

    "I won [the] Striker of the Year Award and no player can win an individual award without [the] strongest team and loyal fans behind him. Thank you for your support."

    Messi indicated in his acceptance speech a desire to keep playing, with retirement not on the 34-year-old's agenda in the near future.

    "I don't know how many years I have left, but I hope there will still be many because I am having enormous fun," Messi added.

  • Lionel Messi wins historic seventh Ballon d'Or Lionel Messi wins historic seventh Ballon d'Or

    Lionel Messi has won a record-extending seventh Ballon d'Or after beating Robert Lewandowski to the most sought-after individual prize in football.

    The Paris Saint-Germain star may have endured a somewhat slow start to life in France this season, but before that he was electric for Barcelona and Argentina.

    It was surely his long-awaited first trophy success with La Albiceleste that gave Messi the edge over Bayern Munich striker Lewandowski. 

    Messi captained Argentina to Copa America success in July, ending their 28-year drought in major international competitions.

     

    At the Maracana – the scene of Argentina's 2014 World Cup final defeat to Germany – Messi helped Lionel Scaloni's men to a 1-0 win over bitter rivals and Copa hosts Brazil.

    He had previously lost Copa finals in 2007, 2015 and 2016, briefly retiring after missing his penalty in the shootout that saw the trophy slip from their grasp in the latter.

    Messi may not have had the decisive impact in this year's final, but over the course of the tournament he was deemed to have been the best player, scoring four goals and setting up another five – no one bettered him in either metric.

     

    Lewandowski had been considered the favourite before then, partly due to breaking Gerd Muller's long-standing record of 40 goals in a single Bundesliga season.

    The Poland striker looked likely to have won the award in 2020 before it was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    But Messi's success in Brazil seemed to tip the scales in his favour, with the 34-year-old increasing his lead over Cristiano Ronaldo in the Ballon d'Or stakes, the Manchester United forward now two back on five after finishing sixth in the voting this time around.

    Lewandowski did, however, win the inaugural Striker of the Year award.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.