It has long been muted that Carlos Tevez would eventually leave English shores to continue his career in Italy with both Milan clubs Internazionale and AC having courted the explosive Argentine for a number of years - however it was the Old Lady of Turin, Juventus, who finally ended Carlos Tevez's controversy filled spell in England.
Tevez was pictured in Turin yesterday evening with his new Number 10 shirt and said to Sky Italia: "I'm really happy to be here at Juve" before adding, "Juventus wanted me more than Milan."
With Juventus having already secured the signature of Athletic Bilbao striker Fernando Llorente on a Bosman - with the deal due to be completed on July 1 it looks very much as if Antonio Conte wants to improve his options going forward as the Italian Champions look to progress further than the quarter-finals of the Champions League.
However with Conte being known for his stringent preference of a 3-5-2 or a 3-1-4-2 there is great debate as to just how Tevez will fit into the Juventus system alongside Llorente.
It was plain for all to see last term that Juventus lacked in the forward department, Alessandro Matri had an acceptable albeit not prolific season with the Italian striker providing just eight goals, Nicklas Bendtner on loan from Arsenal pitched in with no League goals at all whilst Sebastian Giovinco on his return to Turin after a loan spell with Parma, did actually contribute seven goals from the attacking midfield position which did take a small amount of pressure off the shoulders of Mirko Vucinic who was entrusted with the task of leading the Juventus front line however the Montenegrin could only muster ten goals in thirty one appearances.
With Conte desperately looking for more goals from his side especially in the forward department it made great sense to spend a significant amount of money on a marquee signing in that area, many thought Llorente was this marquee signing and Conte would ease the Spaniard into his current system without too much pressure due to the lack of a transfer fee however the signing of Tevez whose wages are reported to be significantly higher than any other of Juventus' forwards is a real act of intent as Juventus look to improve yet further under Conte.
Juventus also suffered from a lack of depth in their forward line last season with Matri and Quagliarella suffering from injuries which left Conte without options and forced his hand in the signing of Nicolas Anelka on loan in January. With Conte lacking numbers going forward as a result of injuries to a number of his forwards the Italian coach had to turn to a 3-5-1-1 system which utilised just one recognised striker which worked as a result of the sizeable physical strength possessed by Juventus in their midfield in the shapes of Paul Pogba, Arturo Vidal and Claudio Marchisio. Such evasive action will not be necessary this coming campaign however with Conte having strengthened his forward line in number with additions of Llorente and Tevez.
However whilst from the outset these transfers look positive we still have to analyse whether or not Carlos Tevez and Llorente will fit into Conte's system at Juventus with the 3-5-2 or the 3-4-1-2 formations only allowing for two recognised centre forwards with Mirko Vucinic still having to be accommodated into the team. Antonio Conte in having a player like Tevez at his disposal is now to a degree blessed as a result of the Argentine's versatility and work rate, it would not be a huge surprise to me if next season we see Llorente and Vucinic as the forward pairing with Tevez playing just off them as the 'false nine' in the '1' slot in the 3-4-1-2 formation.
Tevez's energy and creativity would allow him to play this role perfectly in terms of drawing a defender out towards him and then sliding a clever reverse pass to either Llorente or Vucinic into the space the defender has just left vacated. We have seen Carlos Tevez play this way before during his time at Manchester City and earlier Manchester United, especially after the arrival of Dimitar Berbatov in the summer of 2008.
Tevez when he returned from his self imposed golfing 'exile' near the climax of the 2011/12 campaign, was thrust straight back into the Manchester City team to aid the Blues' hunt for the Premier League title and the Argentine was instrumental in City eventually claiming the crowd with the experienced attacker often dropping deeper than his centre forward role required to collect the ball and then feed Sergio Aguero in behind. The two formed a lethal partnership throughout the latter matches of that campaign but were unable to recreate it the following season.
At Manchester United following Dimitar Berbatov's arrival Tevez found first-team opportunities difficult to come by in comparison to his previous season at Old Trafford and was often forced to play just off Berbatov and look to feed the Bulgarian into good goalscoring positions, however the pairing's playing styles never really clicked and it was a partnership that was doomed to fail from the outset and ended with Tevez refusing to join the club on a permanent basis.
Alternatively we could see a direct pairing of Tevez and Llorente at Juventus next season with the playing styles and tendencies of the two having the potential to be significantly fruitful for Conte. Carlos Tevez is known to be a hard worker on the pitch, chasing after most lost balls that other players wouldn't as well as pressing the opposition's defensive line high up the pitch, this would suit Llorente's more relaxed, slower if you will, style of play right down to the ground.
Whilst at Bilbao, Llorente has often been seen as a technically gifted target man who the more creative talents of Iker Muniain, Ander Herrera and Oscar de Marcos are told to look for. Llorente will often get good service as a result of this and can use his high technical ability to fashion out an opening for himself before finishing the move. With Tevez being essentially the workhorse and pulling the strings alongside Llorente there is likely to be more space created by Tevez's movement for Llorente and therefore more chances for the Spaniard to convert.
This sort of partnership that Tevez and Llorente could well form is likely to give Juventus a new dynamic with the Turin side in the last two seasons relying on Andrea Pirlo and their midfield to kick start attacks and be the real force within their team, this has often given opposing teams, particularly in the European Cup, an idea of how to break Juventus down and stop them being effective.
However with their now being a totally different threat in the final third courtesy of Tevez and Llorente, opponents are going to have to do a lot more than press and man mark Andrea Pirlo to stop Juventus.
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