Massimiliano Allegri laughed off comparisons between Dusan Vlahovic and Cristiano Ronaldo after the former scored a brace in Juve’s 3-2 victory over Empoli on Saturday evening.
Vlahovic’s impact in Turin has been immediate. The prolific Serb, who joined the club in a rebuild-defining deal in January, scored superbly on his Serie A debut for the club and his brace on Saturday has taken his tally up to four goals in all competitions for the Bianconeri and 20 in Serie A this term.
He currently leads Ciro Immobile in the race for Capocannoniere.
While some were sceptical over Vlahovic’s viability in Allegri’s cautious, transition-heavy system, the striker’s early showings have eased any fears. After struggling against Merih Demiral and Gleison Bremer in Juve’s draws against Atalanta and Torino respectively, the 22-year-old responded by making history on his Champions League debut before scoring twice on Saturday.
Massimiliano Allegri says you “can’t compare” Dusan Vlahovic & Cristiano Ronaldo
Vlahovic has proved in his last two outings that he only needs a mere sniff to hurt opponents. The Serb’s efficiency in front of goal is frightening, and his capacity to score a variety of goals from absolutely nothing is ideal for a Juventus side that struggle to create a bucket-load of chances.
The 22-year-old boasts the killer-instinct and cold-bloodedness of a certain Cristiano Ronaldo, whom Vlahovic has replaced at Juventus following the all-time great’s stunning exit last summer. Ronaldo scored 101 times for the Old Lady and helped them to a pair of Scudetti.
However, Vlahovic will be looking to surpass the 37-year-old’s Bianconeri legacy as time progress and he continues to evolve. For the time being, though, Juve boss Allegri believes there’s no comparison to be made between the two considering all that Ronaldo’s achieved in his illustrious career.
“Vlahovic or Cristiano? Cristiano Ronaldo is a five-time Ballon d’Or winner. We can’t compare the two,” he told DAZN Italy after the Empoli win (via @JuveFC).
“Dusan is at the beginning of his career. To stay at great levels you have to have mental strength. His path that has started and it will continue in the best possible way.”
Allegri nonetheless praised the impact made by Vlahovic following his January arrival: “Vlahovic’s impact? It’s not that I didn’t expect it, but from a character point of view, we immediately saw that he wants to win and that he’s a fighter.
“He has plenty of room for improvement. Today he moved more, he didn’t just stay in the centre,” he added, implying that the striker was perhaps too static and thus one-dimensional in recent outings. Against Empoli, Vlahovic certainly looked more dynamic and tougher to mark.