The new Bianconeri boss has met with the Portuguese superstar and outlined his plans for 2019-20, with it his intention to implement a new system
Maurizio Sarri has taken the reins at Juventus and made a meeting with Cristiano Ronaldo one of his first points of business.
The former Napoli and Chelsea boss is back in Serie A after a season-long spell in the Premier League at Stamford Bridge and he has inherited a star-studded squad in Turin from Massimiliano Allegri.
And it would appear that Sarri is already eager to ensure that he has
everybody on the same page and buying into his plans for 2019-20.
Ronaldo will have a prominent role to play for the Bianconeri next season and his new boss has made a special trip to meet his star player, with Sarri visiting the Portuguese on the French Riviera on Friday.
Sporting director Fabio Paratici was also in attendance as a blueprint was drawn up for a new era at the Allianz Stadium.
A major part of that project will be a slight positional tweak for Ronaldo, with the intention being to get the five-time Ballon d’Or winner operating as a central striker, rather than a support forward.
Juventus want the 34-year-old in and around the penalty area at all times and their belief is that Ronaldo could chase down the all-time record of most goals in a single Serie A season, which currently stands at 36.
Gonzalo Higuain, who is due back at Juve this summer from a loan spell at Chelsea, is the current record holder after his stunning campaign with Napoli, under Sarri’s stewardship, in the 2015-16 season.
Ronaldo managed 28 across all competitions in 2018-19, with 21 of those coming in the Italian top-flight and Sarri’s plan is to now push the Portuguese closer to 40.
In an effort to try and hit that mark, the new man at the helm will look to use either a 4-3-3 or 4-3-1-2 formation.
Douglas Costa and Federico Bernardeschi will be charged with providing the ammunition for Ronaldo from wide roles, while there also appears to be a future for Paulo Dybala at the club.
Indeed, at his Juve unveiling press conference on Thursday, the Italian suggested he needs “talented players who can make the difference”, mentioning Dybala and Costa by name.
It does, however, remain to be seen whether Ronaldo will buy into the new vision, as he has opposed playing a central striker role in the past during his time at Real Madrid.
He prefers to drift into the box from a free role and take advantage of the space opened up by others.
Further discussions are planned during pre-season, with Juve eager to get Ronaldo in the best condition and position to make the biggest impact.
He has, however, welcomed Sarri’s efforts to make him integral to the club’s future plans and no doors have been closed as the Bianconeri prepare to go in search of a ninth successive Serie A title.
Aaron Ramsey is one who has been brought in in an attempt to help them do just that, while there is also interest in Adrien Rabiot, as well as Matthijs de Ligt and Paul Pogba.