Lippi: Conte's Juventus are modelled on mine

The former Bianconeri boss believes the current team have the same spirit he instilled during his two spells in charge, and he is backing them to retain their Serie A title
Former Juventus coach Marcello Lippi believes Antonio Conte's current crop share the same never-say-die attitude he demanded during his time at the club.

Now in charge at Chinese side Guangzhou Evergrande, the 64-year-old remains legend in Turin, having won the European Cup with the Turin club in 1996, and is full of praise for the job done by the former Siena coach.

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"Conte's Juve is like mine for motivation, commitment and desire to win," he told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"[Winning the Scudetto] was a tremendous achievement. Now he [Conte] has a great team with a philosophy of play, competitiveness and a clear 'Juventinita'."

Juve are back in competitive action this Saturday when they face Napoli in the Supercoppa Italiana in Beijing.

And Lippi is tipping to Juventus to retain their Serie A title, but admits that they must work hard to re-establish themselves among Europe's elite.

"[Juve should have] the aim to have fun and be ambitious. The team is competitive, their new purchases are strong; Buffon and Pirlo are champions.

"[In the league] I do not see strong teams like Juventus.

"In Europe there are two teams, Barcelona and Real Madrid, in front of everyone. Then there is a group of five or six teams including Juve.

"The key is the belief in the work and its quality.
The thought of being able to beat anyone."

Off the pitch, Juventus and Conte are embroiled in fresh allegations of match-fixing, with a member of the backroom staff, Cristian Stellini, tendering his resignation on Monday. Lippi is adamant, however, that Conte is innocent of any crooked dealings.

"I know Antonio is a person of true clarity and seriousness. I do not think he did anything wrong," he added.