Juventus coach Conte keen to avoid focus on referees

The Juventus boss was unhappy with officiating in their last Champions League encounter with Real Madrid but wants his side to concentrate on their own game in an "historic tie"
Juventus coach Antonio Conte says that his side must focus on their own game against Real Madrid rather than worry about refereeing decisions.

The Bianconeri boss was left bemused on Champions League matchday three when Los Blancos received a penalty and defender Giorgio Chiellini was later dismissed in a 2-1 defeat.

Manuel Grafe, the referee at the Santiago Bernabeu in that game, has reportedly since been dropped from officiating in matches of such significance but Conte is reluctant to be too harsh.

"Refereeing decisions affected the game in the first tie but referees make mistakes, like everyone does," the 44-year-old told a press conference.

"We need to think about playing football and maintaining our confidence in the referees that we're assigned."

English official Howard Webb will be in charge of the match, which is of crucial importance to Juve's Champions League ambitions.

The Serie A champions have taken two points from their opening three games in Group B and know that another loss to Madrid on Tuesday could jeopardise their chances of making it through to the last 16.

"There's great fascination surrounding this fixture; Juve against Real is an historic tie in European football," Conte continued. "It's a great tie that's important for our progress in the Champions League. We need to be proud that we're involved in a game like this.

"We can also change things as the game progresses. What counts more, however, is the desire we show on the night. We approach the game following three league wins and need to show that we deserve to go through to the knockout stages."