16 November 2012 00:37
Juventus coach Antonio Conte says he has been left astounded by comments made by Antonio Cassano as their war of words rumbles on.
The Inter Milan forward labelled the Juventus coach a ‘quaquaraqua’, intimating that he often speaks to the media but with little or no meaning and said Conte could not comment on his actions due to his own moral misgivings.
That accusation has forced the 43-year-old to issue a fierce defence of himself and deliver a damning verdict on the 30-year-old’s latest outburst.
“I was astounded to read the statements from Mr Cassano, following which I am forced to make certain clarifying points,” Conte told the Juventus website.
“First of all I never used the term morality, despite the fact I have it in spades. I have already expressed my opinion on the ban for failing to report match-fixing in the past.”
The former AC Milan man also said Juve only ever sign small players, with Conte insisting the club purchased those with specific professional characteristics – an area he says Cassano is lacking.
“When asked how I choose players for Juventus, I said we look to the man, by which I meant how he interprets the role of a footballer in a professional manner,” he said.
“That means effort, commitment, respecting the rules and the roles of others, plus caring about the common good of the team.
“I think that Mr Cassano has already shown many times over his career both on and off the field – such as his impressions of Fabio Capello at Real Madrid or insulting gestures at referee Roberto Rosetti and other incidents – that he does not have the requisite characteristics I am looking for.”