Nov 27 (Reuters) - Juventus coach Antonio Conte is still looking to get more out of midfielder Arturo Vidal, who scored the first hat-trick of his career in Wednesday's 3-1 Champions League victory over FC Copenhagen.
The Chilean's performance was another demonstration of his great versatility as he returned to his familiar midfield role three days after playing as an improvised defender in the 2-0 win at Livorno.
The tireless Vidal, who complements his ball-winning abilities with excellent distribution and an impressive scoring record, converted two penalties and topped his evening by heading home Paul Pogba's cross.
"I liked the third goal as it came from an excellent infiltration into the area which we have practiced in training," Conte told reporters after Juventus climbed up to second in the group with one match remaining.
"Vidal is always calm and collected when he shoots which is why I chose him three years ago. He has the cold-bloodedness of a great forward when he is near the goal but he can and must improve a lot.
"He has not yet reached his full potential."
Vidal, 26, has won successive Serie A titles in his first two full seasons with Juventus and is expected to sign a new contract in the next few days.
The feisty Chilean, courted by Bayern Munich before joining Juventus, has turned into one of the side's most important players alongside midfield maestro Andrea Pirlo and goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon.
He also has the World Cup to look forward to at the end of the season, although he has not been so popular with Chile supporters as he is with Juventus.
Vidal took a large share of the blame when Chile suffered a run of five successive defeats last year which resulted in coach Claudio Borghi being fired, especially as he was sent off in two of those games.
However, his performances have improved greatly under new coach Jorge Sampaoli and he scored in four successive qualifiers, against Paraguay, Bolivia, Venezuela and Colombia, after returning from suspension to guide Chile to their second successive finals. (Writing by Brian Homewood; Editing by John O'Brien)
- Sports & Recreation
- Arturo Vidal
- Antonio Conte