Coach Luigi Delneri hailed a good night's work by his Juventus side after a 2-0 win at Shamrock Rovers FC in the first leg of their UEFA Europa League third qualifying round tie.
Shamrock Rovers had dubbed the visit of Juventus to Dublin the "stuff of dreams" but found themselves in arrears after just three minutes, Amauri finishing after good work from Diego. The Brazilian striker added a second with 15 minutes remaining to leave Shamrock facing an uphill struggle in Turin next week.
For Delneri, his first competitive game since succeeding Alberto Zaccheroni at the helm in May proved a comfortable introduction. "There is room for improvement but we have already shown our main weapons: intensity and pace," he said.
"We deserved the victory and looked in good shape. It's too early to talk about the effects of my work. We just have to work on our mental approach and try to improve game by game." The Serie A season may not start until the end of August yet Delneri knows the significance of the Bianconeri gathering early momentum after last term's disappointing seventh-place finish.
"Winning games always helps in terms of confidence, so this was a very important result for us at this stage," added the former UC Sampdoria boss. "Our opponents were probably not the best technically, but physically they were very good and gave us a tough game. I'm sure the players will not think too much about last season, you need to forget the past quickly in this sport."
Goalscorer Amauri, though, sounded a cautious note. "I'm eager to make amends for last season, which did not go as I expected," he said. "I'm very happy to have started well with two goals. We will not make the mistake of thinking the tie is over, though, because there are still 90 minutes to play and we will try to finish the job in Turin."
Delneri's Shamrock counterpart Michael O'Neill could find no fault with his team. "I'm very proud of the players in terms of effort and commitment," he said. "I think they showed a lot of character."
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