MILAN - Juventus coach Ciro Ferrara said
he believed he would stay in his job after a 3-0 defeat at home
to AC Milan on Sunday all but ended their Serie A title hopes.
Third-placed Juve have now slipped 12 points behind leaders
Inter Milan at the halfway stage of the season and the loss was
met by minor trouble inside and outside the stadium in Turin.
Their fourth defeat in five matches in all competitions,
including their Champions League exit to Bayern Munich in
December, has led to renewed media speculation that Juve are
lining up Russia coach Guus Hiddink to replace Ferrara.
When asked if he had considered resigning, the 42-year-old
told Sky TV: "I am not made like that. My way is to try to
"I sincerely think my job is not at risk. Of course we are
in a negative period but it's not for me to make the decisions.
Any decisions will be accepted."
The former Juve defender took charge for two games at the
end of last season after the surprise sacking of Claudio Ranieri
and impressed enough to be given the role full time despite his
lack of managerial experience.
Juve, still recovering from a demotion for match-fixing in
2006, spent heavily in the close season but Brazilians Diego and
Felipe Melo have been big flops so far.
A flurry of injuries, including a knock to midfielder
Christian Poulsen on Sunday which could delay Tiago's planned
loan move to Atletico Madrid, have also not helped Ferrara.
"I obviously understand the disappointment (of the fans).
Our aim is to try to find the enthusiam there was at the start
of the season," he added.
Milan's Leonardo, another coach in his first proper season
in charge, was overjoyed to emerge as Inter's only real title
rivals thanks to two goals from Ronaldinho.
The in-form Rossoneri, eight behind Inter with a game in
hand, had big problems in Leonardo's first months in the job and
he told friend Ferrara not to give up.
"It was a difficult game, even if it didn't seem like that,"
the Brazilian said. "Juve are in a situation similar to us in
October, it seems like everything is going wrong. I say to Ciro
that it can sort itself out."
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