15 July 2014 03:35
Fernando Llorente said defending champions Juventus are determined to maintain their stranglehold on Serie A.
Juventus claimed a third consecutive Scudetto title after a record-breaking season in 2013-14 that Antonio Conte’s men became the first Italian club to reach 100 points in the league.
There are expected to be personnel changes ahead of the new campaign, with Juventus reportedly set to sell either Arturo Vidal or Paul Pogba, while Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata is tipped to arrive in Turin.
But despite uncertainty surrounding two of the club’s key players, Spanish front man Llorente insists winning the league for the fourth season in succession remained top of the agenda.
The 28-year-old is also expecting another stern challenge from last season’s runners-up Roma, who have already signed free agents Ashley Cole and Urby Emanuelson, and Turkish prodigy Salih Ucan on loan from Fenerbahce.
“Confirming our domination in Serie A is very important for us, it’s a very difficult league,” Llorente said in an interview after Juve’s first pre-season training session.
“In the first year it was very hard and we suffered against the smaller teams too.
“Roma have strengthened and then there are very big teams like Napoli and the new Milan. There is Inter too.
“For us it will be very important to confirm ourselves again as the best in the League. Concentrating on the League will be important because if we do well in Serie A, we will also do well in the cups.”
While Llorente played an integral role in the club’s championship-winning campaign – scoring 18 goals in all competitions – he has continued to be linked with a move away.
However, Llorente intends to remain a Juventus player for many years to come.
“For me, staying at this club is something incredible. I am very happy to be here and I hope I can have another great season,” he said.
“Hopefully I can be even better, because for me staying here for all the years I can is very important.”