Juventus boss Maurizio Sarri says he “couldn’t care less” about Paulo Dybala’s angry response to being substituted for Gonzalo Higuain in a Serie A clash at Roma.
The Bianconeri returned to the Serie A summit with a 2-1 win at Stadio Olimpico, thanks to Merih Demiral’s third-minute volley and a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty.
Roma scored from the spot themselves via Diego Perotti to set up a tense finale, but Juve held on for a valuable three points which saw them move two points ahead of Inter.
Dybala had a hand in both of the home side’s goals, but he was taken off shortly before the 70-minute mark, with Higuain asked to lead the line for the final portion of the match.
The Argentina international was clearly frustrated as he left the pitch, but Sarri defended his decision post-match.
“I couldn’t care less, to be perfectly honest,” the Juve manager told Sky Sport Italia. “The game was telling me to do certain things and I had to make decisions.
“Paulo can give his response on the field, but it’s pretty normal. I’ve never seen a player leave the pitch looking happy with the idea.”
Aaron Ramsey and Adrien Rabiot were handed rare starts against Roma, with Sarri going on to praise the pair for the recent improvements.
“They are improving game by game, so I am pleased with them both, but they also have margins for more improvement,” he said.
“Aaron was also able to score a few goals at Arsenal, as it’s in his DNA to run forward between the lines.
“It’s not easy for him in Serie A and he had a series of fitness issues.
“We knew that we’d have to wait for him and I am pleased that our patience is paying off. I am convinced the same will be said of Rabiot.”
All three players in question will be back in contention for a place in Sarri’s line up when Juve play host to Udinese in a Coppa Italia round of 16 clash on Wednesday.
The reigning Italian champions will continue the latest defence of their crown four days later, with Parma set to arrive at the Allianz Stadium.