After Conte suddenly quit as Juventus manager on Tuesday, the rumors of Allegri to Juventus bubbled up almost immediately. It was hilarious to think of as a Milan fan, but I didn’t take it seriously. Surely with other options, including ex-Juventus star Zinedine Zidane, who recently left his tutelage under Carlo Ancelotti at Real Madrid, Allegri would be their last option. And maybe he was, who knows? But as rumors became news and then he was officially unveiled by the club, the schadenfreude took over and left Milan fans everywhere giggling in delight.

This is old news, but who's trolling who now?

It is easy to argue that our giggling is unfounded. After all, Allegri won a Scudetto his first year in charge of Milan, when he had a decent team. And Juventus have more than a decent team. It is easy to see how with the excitement of a new manager, Juve could easily bag a fourth consecutive Scudetto under Allegri’s command. And don’t forget Allegri’s success in the Champions League. Despite the fact that Juventus are now ten times more likely to draw Barcelona this season, Allegri is the perfect tactical antidote for them. I actually expect Juventus to do very well in the Champions League with him.

Juventus are dealing with two issues: the sudden loss of their iconic coach two days into the preseason, and the mercato, which is why Conte left. If they truly cannot afford to keep all of their players and/or purchase the caliber of players Conte wanted, then there is no better man for them to have around than Allegri. He is not only the perfect puppet to management at a time like this, but he seems to thrive on the “Year Zero” mentality of accomplishing more with less. And despite the diminishing results that saw him leave Milan in ruins this season, prior to that he actually really did accomplish so much with so little. Remember he is still one of the most winning coaches in Milan history, which is no easy feat after three and a half years on the bench and some of the players he was given. On paper, he’s exactly what Juventus management need.

His tactics are certainly unique

So why the schadenfreude, then, if he’s actually a good thing for Juventus? I could sum it up with my children’s faces when I told them the news, if only I’d been wise enough to record it. Even the youngest Milan fans understand what Allegri means to Juventus.

Allegri is perhaps the most unlikeable person in Serie A, and that includes quite a cast of characters. For some, he is even hated and despised, but unlikeable is probably more appropriate compared to others. Milan fans know all too well that he seems to lack a lot of normal social graces, and his press conferences are actually a bizarre detour from reality that is simply maddening to behold, especially if he’s your coach. There are his late subs, which were frustrating even during his first season at Milan when he won the Scudetto. He is a contender for the most stubborn person in the universe, and seems to take some sort of sick thrill from playing players out of position. Then there is lack of squad rotation and running certain players into the ground. Forget developing youth players, unless they are really, really good, then he will also ruin their health. He’s the kind of coach you would only wish on your very worst enemies.

"Hey, babe! Remember me?"

Oh yeah, and then there’s Pirlo. This move provides so much schadenfreude in regards to the iconic midfielder, too. Beloved at Milan, Allegri came in and made him obsolete. Coupled with injury woes, Pirlo barely played under Allegri, and then was viewed as surplus, making it easy for management to let him go on a free transfer and a pen. You know, that sticking point that Pirlo wrote about in his book? That after 10 years at Milan, Galliani only gave him a pen? Yeah, and all of that other horrible stuff he said about Milan that hurt Milan fans who loved him. That has all come full circle, and now he’s once again playing for the coach who he also had so much to say about. What is it that they say again about Karma, dear Andrea?

Last but not least, I am not sure whether Allegri is more widely hated by Milan fans or Juventus fans. I suppose it began with the whole “il gol di Muntari” incident. There is no love lost between Conte & Allegri, which of course Juve fans would side with Conte, even if he did just abandon them and leave them stuck with the latter. Or maybe it was Allegri’s self righteous comments in the beginning of all of that acrimony that eventually led him down the road  to complaining about the refs and trolling Juve just like the rest of us mere humans. Or maybe he is still that annoying coach that brought Milan so close to taking the Scudetto from them the first couple of years and provided some humiliation at times, too. Whatever the reason, knowing they hate him makes this all that much more enjoyable for those of us Milan fans who have been privy to the abuse from these same Juve fans these past few years and who have also suffered under Allegri simultaneously. Most of us are still impacted daily by PTAD (Post Traumatic Allegri Disorder™,) and this may just be the healing we need.

It's gonna be extra hard for Galliani to let him go to the club he once supported

Or maybe it’s just Allegri. He rubs most people the wrong way. When you consider that Galliani is one of his closest friends and allies, who is also ironically a Juventino, that tells you a lot about him. Juventus should do very well this season on the pitch, but hearing him scream “Dai Dai Dai” to another team will be delicious schadenfreude for Milanisti, even if we suffer defeat at the hands of The Most Interesting Coach in the World. Juve fans should be grateful that it’s not actually Year Zero for them. And if it makes them feel any better, both Conte and Allegri have served bans for matchfixing within their collective careers as players and coaches. But don’t worry, Juventini. His hair may not be as glorious as Conte’s, but at least it’s his own.

This post inspired by the music of Radiohead’s “Karma Police”

Schadenfreude Schadenfreude Reviewed by Elaine on 12:00 AM Rating: 5
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