[imghttp://d.yimg.com/a/p/afp/20100122/capt.photo_1264186366599-1-0.jpg?x=213&y=302&xc=1&yc=1&wc=289&hc=410&q=85&sig=Obv6POc_F7Vax3G3J_cyjw--][/img]ROME (AFP) – Defiant Juventus coach Ciro Ferrara on Friday blasted speculation linking Russia coach Guus Hiddink with his job ahead of Saturday's visit of AS Roma.
The under fire boss is in desperate need of a victory, not just for his own future but also to maintain his team's hopes of finishing this season in a Champions League qualification position.
And he reacted angrily when asked about reports in the Russian press earlier this week from Hiddink's agent that the Dutchman had turned down an offer from Juve.
"I have more belief in the words of our president (Jean-Claude Blanc) who has assured me there has been no such contact," he said.
"It's not the first time that agents or coaches have said things. I certainly wouldn't have refused such an offer.
"In this type of situation there's always someone trying to exploit it to promote someone else.
"If it's discussed every day, then Ferrara's position must be under threat and whoever might be coming looks after his own interests, sometimes in a way that is not correct."
Ferrara's team has lost seven of its last 10 matches, during which time they crashed out of the Champions League group stages and have fallen from second to fifth in the Serie A table.
The team is also hamstrung by important absentees such as strikers Vincenzo Iaquinta and David Trezeguet as well as midfielders Felipe Melo, Christian Poulsen and Mauro Camoranesi.
So Ferrara admitted he was relieved to have Mohamed Sissoko back from African Nations Cup duty with Mali and fit again having been injured before he went to Angola.
"Momo is ready to play. The important thing is that he's not got any problems. The problems he had before are behind him and he's ready.
"He's important because of his great strength and because of the intensity he brings to training. That stimulates the whole group."