De Ceglie unfazed by Armero's potential arrival at Juventus

The left-back claims the Colombian will only add more competition for places at the Old Lady if he makes the switch, and revealed his frustration at missing out on the Italy squad
Paolo De Ceglie has played down suggestions that the rumoured arrival of Pablo Armero at Juventus will affect his chances of a first-team place.

The Colombia international claimed on Friday that the Bianconeri, along with Napoli, are interested in landing his signature this summer, and it is understood that the Serie A champions hold the upper hand in the race to conclude a deal.

Any move for Armero would threaten De Ceglie's credentials for a left-back spot in the team, but the Italian believes the increased competition for places in Turin would only serve to energise the rest of his colleagues.

"No, it is always a motivation. As I have said before, we are not prima donnas at Juve," De Ceglie told reporters.

"It is right that for each role in the team, there are more players and, when coupled with intelligent sporting competition, those who will play will be those who are in better shape, who deserve it more and who, at that time, can give more to the team."

De Ceglie made 21 appearances in the league last term and signed a new contract extension until 2017.

Now back to full fitness after a series of niggling injuries, he is fired up more than ever to consolidate his place in coach Antonio Conte's plans.

"We are focused and determined, we are thinking only about training, nothing else," said the wing-back.

"At Juventus, one is always under pressure; every year you start again. While I hope to stay here for a long time, we all know that it is difficult to be guaranteed a place here and this year will be even tougher with more competition, but we are aiming for the maximum.

"Continuity is a goal for me, to come out every year at the beginning of the season wearing this shirt and playing in my position.

"Unfortunately last season I had a small injury that meant it wasn't possible to try to get into the Italy team. I was hoping for it because I felt that I was able to do it.

"Then, it went as it did, but I begin this season and hope for future opportunities."