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Massimiliano Allegri urged Juventus to do their talking on the pitch when they travel to face Lazio on Saturday in a key clash in the Serie A top-four race.

The Turin club ended a three-match winless league run by beating Fiorentina before the international break.

But a sluggish start to the season left them eighth after 12 rounds, three points behind Lazio in fifth and 14 points adrift of joint-leaders Napoli and AC Milan.

“In this moment we must act, not think. We are lagging behind in the table, four points from fourth place, and gossiping about it is no use to anyone,” Allegri told a news conference on Friday.

“We need to just think about looking to slowly but surely improve in the attacking and defensive phases, as well as our league position.”

Allegri confirmed that striker Paulo Dybala is doubtful as he struggles with a calf injury, while Aaron Ramsey has also sustained a knock.

The coach will be up against Lazio manager Maurizio Sarri, who led Juve to their last Serie A title in 2019-20.

Sarri was sacked after a last-16 Champions League exit to Olympique Lyonnais, and was reported to have later called the Juve squad ‘uncoachable’.

“Maurizio is a fantastic coach who won a league title here. You will need to ask him about that, he said it, not me,” Allegri said.

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“For me every squad is coachable, it depends on the players you have how you coach them. But compared to two years ago, this team has changed.”

“It will be a great match between two teams who are hovering just outside the top four,” he added.

“It will be difficult, it is the first game back after the break so we need to get going again quickly. We have a lot of important matches coming up.”

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