April was the first month that everyone in Juventus world accepted the flattening of Scudetto dreams, including the players and staff.
After an international break, the Old Lady started the month by taking part in Derby Della Mole. Shortly after the draw vs Torino, 2 wins vs Napoli and Genoa, a defeat at Bergamo a win vs Parma, and sharing the spoils at Firenze came, which puts Juventini in an unconfident situation about Champions League spots. Conceding 7 goals in 5 games against bottom table teams and failing to keep a single clean sheet isn't acceptable by no means especially with Juve's standards, but actually, the defenders didn't organize a bad job this month. The first goal vs Torino was Szczesny's fault while the second one came after an assist from Juve's own Kulusevski. Napoli's and Fiorentina's only goal came from the spot, Parma's came from a free-kick and Atalanta's only goal was a result of a deflected shot. This shows that more than technical and tactical issues, there were some psychological problems.
In terms of attacking, the Bianconeri scored 11 goals in these 7 games which is a big disappointment. Morata and Ronaldo with 2 goals were our best scorers while Cuadrado with 4 assists was the best assist provider. Last month Juan Cuadrado and Matthijs de Ligt were better than their other teammates. De Ligt was again a rock. This much consistency on this level isn’t normal for a player of de Ligt’s age. Unlike previous months, there isn't a top 3 podium, instead of the annotation about player of the month. Juan Cuadrado will be longer. The Colombian international is hugely underrated by most of the football fans worldwide and it is worth it to dedicate the whole part to him.
Juan Cuadrado joined Juventus on loan (16 which eventually became permanent) from Chelsea in 2015; the same year as Mario Mandzukic, Paulo Dybala, and Alex Sandro. This season is his 6th season in black and white, which means he has been around longer than many fan beloveds like Pirlo, Vidal, Pogba, and Mandzukic. 6 years with very bold memories; a mesmerizing goal vs Bayern Munich with a cold blood fake footstep and strike vs Philipp Lahm and Manuel Neuer in the process, an absolute rocket of a winner vs Inter, a clutch header vs Milan, being decisive in that historic conquest of San Siro with giving an assist to Douglas Costa and scoring (or making Skriniar score that own goal); and many beautiful goals such as the ones vs Atletico and OL.
During his tenure in Juventus, Cuadrado has played in numerous positions. A wing-back in 352, a winger in 4231 and a Right Forward in 433 for Allegri, a Right Back in 433 for Sarri, and now a Right Midfielder in 442 for Pirlo. Cuadrado isn’t intelligent in making decisions but he is tremendously skillful and is one of the best players in the world in one-on-one situations, he is fast and since working with Carlos Queiroz in his national team he has been very outstanding with his crosses. Overall he plays an eye-catching South American futbol.
In these years he has been emotionally attached to the club, being one of the caring players of the team with passion and grinta. It is a well-known story that for making Marotta keep him in Juve, he had cried in the former CEO’s office.
The sad point about Cuadrado is, in spite of his dedication, longevity, consistency, and decent level of performance he never got the love and respect he deserved.
Last season Maurizio Sarri started Cuadrado as a right-back and it really brought his game to the next level. Juventini were worried about Cancelo’s disappearance but it’s safe to say Cuadrado has been an absolute upgrade as he has been better than the Portuguese international both defensively and offensively. This season Juan Cuadrado has been even better; so far no fullback has provided more assists than Cuadrado and it seems not a soul is going to catch him. In Serie A he has 10 assists, making him the top player of the league in this classification. He is the number one in Uefa Champions League too, with 6 assists having elites such as Kimmich, De Bruyne, and Di Maria behind him.
Anyway, in April Cuadrado was present in all of Juventus games, providing four assists. His best game was vs Napoli, in which he strangely didn't give a successful assist. His four assists came vs Genoa (to Kulusevski), vs Parma (to Sandro & de Ligt) & vs Fiorentina (to Morata)
In the pursuit of Top 4, Player of The Month Juan Cuadrado is one of the players Juventus can certainly count on, but can he and his teammates help Juve achieve it?