Juventus legend Alessandro Del Piero has given the A-League All Stars valuable intelligence on his old side in the lead-up to Sunday’s showpiece clash at ANZ Stadium.
Striker Del Piero will line up in the composite side against the club for whom he scored more than 200 goals in 19 years, before coming to Australia to play two A-League seasons for Sydney FC.
“We were talking football quite a lot last night during dinner and he pointed out a few things to us that we need to be mindful of,” Brisbane Roar midfielder Thomas Broich told reporters on Thursday.
It certainly helps to have him in the team.”
Broich didn’t complete Thursday’s session in Sydney, but the reigning A-League player of the season was adamant he would play on Sunday.
“My achilles is hurting, but it was just a precaution,” Broich said.
“I played for 90 minutes on Tuesday (against the Young Socceroos) – I should be right by tomorrow.”
Broich, who played in the All Stars’ inaugural game against Manchester United last season, regards Juventus as potentially an even tougher opponent.
“I think it’s going to be even more difficult, because this team has been playing together for quite some time and they’ve been fairly successful in recent years,” Broich said of Juventus.
“Last year, Manchester United made a few major changes and I guess the team was a bit unsettled.
“This year, we’re playing against a well-oiled machine, so it’s not going to be any easier.”
While All Stars coach Josep Gombau has yet to show his hand regarding his run-on side, Broich suspects he could start all four members of the squad, who played in the title-winning Roar side.
“It looks like it, but he hasn’t said anything yet, but just reading the line-ups at training …” Broich said.
“I guess it helps to have a core group of players that are on the same page because obviously it’s going to be the biggest challenge to get everybody on that same page.”
Broich covets the shirt of Juve’s Italian international midfield star Andrea Pirlo, but knows he faces plenty of competition from his teammates.
“I speak to the boys and I guess every single one of them is after the Pirlo shirt, but we’ll see,” Broich said.
Striker and former Roar teammate Besart Berisha, who scored the All Stars’ goal in the 5-1 loss to Manchester United, has nominated veteran Italian international goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon as the key defender in the Juventus line-up.
“He’s a legend, a great goalkeeper and I have to pass him, so this is my goal,” Berisha said.