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Italy Serie AChiellini confirms Juve departure after Coppa Italia final defeat

Chiellini confirms Juve departure after Coppa Italia final defeat

Giorgio Chiellini confirmed he would leave Juventus at the end of the season following their 4-2 defeat to Inter in the Coppa Italia final.

The veteran centre-back has spent 17 years with the Bianconeri, winning 20 trophies during his time in Turin.

He could not claim a 21st as Inter prevailed in a thrilling showpiece at the Stadio Olimpico.

Juve appeared set to salvage silverware from a disappointing season when second-half goals from Alex Sandro, aided by Alvaro Morata, and Dusan Vlahovic gave them a 2-1 lead, turning things around Nicolo Barella’s stunning 10th-minute opener put Inter in front.

There was a late twist, though, as Hakan Calhanoglu netted from the spot to send the game to extra-time, in which Ivan Perisic also converted from 12 yards and then sealed victory with a sumptuous half-volley.

Having previously refused to reveal his plans, Chiellini – who is reported to have offers from MLS – said:

“We had these ten magnificent years. It’s up to the lads to continue now.

“I did everything I could. I hope that I have left something. On Monday, I will say goodbye to my Juventus Stadium, then if I’ve still got something in the tank might have a run-out in Florence [against Fiorentina].

“It is my choice 100 per cent. I am happy to leave at such a high level.

Because for many years, I’ve said I didn’t want to finish struggling and not being able to play at my level.

“I gave it my all. Soon I will be the biggest Juventus fan from the outside. You cannot shake it off after so many years within this club.”

Defeat means Juve will finish the season without a trophy for the first time since the 2010-11 campaign.

“It’s disappointing, especially as Inter certainly had more of the ball, but we had more than enough chances,” added Chiellini.

“Mattia Perin didn’t have to make a save. But, unfortunately, we conceded two fantastic goals and two penalties.

“Inter proved that they are more robust in all the head-to-head clashes throughout the season, so that means something. I hope the anger of losing three out of four games against Inter will fire us up for next season.

“We know that you don’t win a Scudetto just in the big games, but every day. Of course, it’s a pity to end the season without trophies after a decade, but we need to use it as fuel for next season.”

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