Del Piero facing up to reality
By Nadia Carminati
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Alessandro Del Piero is struggling to come to terms with the reality of playing in Serie B.
Juventus captain Alessandro Del Piero admits he is struggling to come to terms with the reality of playing Serie B football.
The Bianconeri were relegated for their part in the match-fixing scandal that rocked Italian football and were also deducted 17 points.
Didier Deschamps' men began their bid for an instant return to Serie A with a disappointing 1-1 draw against Rimini.
"The sensation in Rimini was strange, the match was hard," Del Piero told Sky Italia.
"We had to face immediately Serie B, a face-to-face with this new reality.
"On one side there is longing, on the other there is the reality of being in Serie B and we must give everything to return to Serie A as soon as possible.
"We cannot be in too much of a hurry. We would like to delete the penalty immediately, but there is also the risk of being too frenetic.
"On Saturday we had a lot of difficulties, Rimini played a really good match.
"But this gives us good omens for the next matches because we have big margins for improvements.
"Clearly, the sooner we do this, the better.
"It is not so easy entering a new reality, especially after what happened."
Del Piero was substituted before the end of the game against Rimini, a decision that the 31-year-old understands.
"My replacement in Rimini? It's a right episode. I was tired and it was right I left," he said.
Meanwhile, Del Piero says he has no ill-feelings towards any of the players that abandoned the club following their relegation.
Among those to leave were Fabio Cannavaro and Patrick Vieira, but the likes of Gianluigi Buffon and Pavel Nedved remained.
Del Piero is grateful to those that stuck by Juve, but concedes he would not have been with them had Fabio Capello not left for Real Madrid.
He added: "I think the wish of a few of my former team-mates to continue playing in important European sides is quite right.
"It's not easy accepting a lower step.
"That's why I consider Nedved and Buffon's choice, and those of others who had the possibility to leave too, like Camoranesi and Trezeguet, who decided to remain really important.
"Capello? If he'd remained, I'd have surely left Juve."