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The former Palermo coach is confident that the veteran playmaker will rise to the occasion at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday night

Gennaro Gattuso has voiced his admiration for Juventus midfielder Andrea Pirlo ahead of next week's vital Champions League match against Real Madrid, claiming that his former AC Milan team-mate always delivers when it matters most.

The Serie A champions desperately need a good result at the Santiago Bernabeu next week after drawing their opening two games, against Copenhagen and Galatasaray, yet Gattuso has little doubt that the Bianconeri's most influential will show his team the way forward.

"Andrea does not feel any fear and is almost always decivise in games like the one at the Bernabeu next week," the former Rossoneri enforcer told Tuttosport.

"It's always been like that with Pirlo. It was already like that with Milan in the Champions League finals and nothing has changed. I tended to get all nervous and could hardly sleep, whereas Andrea always kept his calm.

"Andrea is 34 years old, he's not a kid any more and he's the first to acknowledge that. You cannot expect him to be on top of his game every Sunday."

Pirlo has made nine appearances for Juventus so far this season, scoring once in the process.

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