There’s no doubting that Moise Kean has struggled on his return to Juventus. So much so that he’s already been linked with leaving the club for a second time in the summer with Paris Saint-Germain lurking.
However, there may be a simple way for Massimiliano Allegri to get the very best out of him.
Away at Empoli on Saturday evening, the young Italian forward was gifted a rare start by the Juventus boss. It was just his ninth Serie A start of the 2021/22 campaign as he scored his fourth league goal courtesy of a smart back-post header.
Kean partnered destined superstar Dusan Vlahovic up top as Alvaro Morata dropped to the bench and the Italian’s goal meant he kept up his impressive record as a starter for Juventus this season.
Should Massimiliano Allegri be considering Moise Kean as a starter?
All five of Kean’s goals this term – he also scored in the 1-0 victory over Malmo on Matchday 6 of the Champions League group stages – have come as a starter.
He’s yet to score off the bench as a substitute.
Thus, could the secret to maximising his talent be merely starting him? It may be something Allegri considers, although Morata has generally impressed since the undroppable Vlahovic joined in January.
Kean has understandably garnered critics this season. He’s far too loose in possession and hesitant in transition. Although, he was often misused by Allegri during the first half of the season. Both Morata and Kean struggled to perform the idealistic centre-forward function in the Juve manager’s eyes; one that Vlahovic is more than capable of performing considering his imposing frame.
He wanted Kean to be the focal point of Juve’s attack, the target man. But, he, like Morata, wasn’t cut out for it. Thus, while it’s too simplistic to say that merely starting Kean will get the very best out of him, there’s no doubting that Allegri could tinker with the Italian’s role to see not only an uptick in production but performance as well.
The Azzurri forward is better-suited to Morata’s new role – Mario Mandzukic 2.0 – when Allegri adopts a 4-3-3. Kean needs to be the runner in the front line, not the target man because he’s so much more effective and dangerous when attacking space as opposed to playing with his back to goal, where his technical shortcomings are laid bare.