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The Argentine talent heaped praised on the veteran midfielder, although he is confident Roma are not far behind in the race for the Scudetto

Roma midfielder Erik Lamela has labelled Andrea Pirlo as the key behind Juventus' bid for a second successive Serie A title, but believes his side are not far behind the reigning champions.

La Maggica take on Inter at the San Siro on Sunday as they look to bounce back from last week's 2-2 draw against Catania, while Juventus travel to Udinese, with Lamela paying homage to the veteran Pirlo.

"Pirlo is a true great, and Juventus have an advantage with him," the 20-year-old acknowledged to Gazzetta dello Sport.

"Roma are also hoping for the Scudetto however. We and Inter will be waiting directly behind them. Our match tomorrow at San Siro promises to be a lot of fun.

"There will be plenty of goals, and I believe we can aim to win."

The Argentina international has come under criticism from fans for his lacklustre performances since arriving from River Plate the previous summer, but he remains unfazed by any perceived negativity.

"The fans say I'm paid too much? I don't mind such comments really, criticism now and then for a player is natural," Lamela rebutted.


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