The boy can play…
The dream of many Juventino was realised an hour before Sunday’s game as Massimiliano Allegri named the highly-regarded teenager Fabio Miretti in his starting XI.
Miretti was key in Juventus’ run to the UEFA Youth League semi-finals and he made his senior debut against Malmo last December. Supporters, however, have been frustrated by the young Italian’s lack of opportunities in Allegri’s side in 2022 despite the Bianconeri’s recent midfield injury woes.
The absence of right-backs for Sunday’s game, though, meant that Allegri couldn’t deploy Danilo in the middle of the park and he granted Miretti his first Bianconeri start. Thus, the teenage midfielder had the chance to showcase what the vast majority of fans knew: he’s good, but he has the potential to be great.
Miretti was deployed at the base of midfield but he didn’t function as an archetypal metronome despite displaying several traits of an elite regista. His understanding of space and the positioning of his teammates are exceptional due to his persistent scanning. Miretti’s constantly capturing a mental picture of his surroundings which enables him to efficiently play off one touch.
His dynamism and box-to-box nature were clear to see as he was keen to receive ahead of the ball and contribute in the opposition’s box. Only Dusan Vlahovic (seven) received more progressive passes than Miretti (six) on Sunday, while Danilo (ten) could only better the Italian’s five completed progressive passes.
The teenager was able to shift the direction of Juve’s attacks with a smart flick around the corner or a crisp, vertical pass to bypass Venezia’s press.
Overall, Miretti’s display in possession was excellent and the promise he manifested on Sunday will have many hoping that we see much more of him before the season’s up. However, the young Italian still has plenty to work on without the ball if he’s to be fully trusted by the manager.
Continues on the next slide…