What a final day in Serie A. Juventus clenched the final Champions League spot in the most unlikely of ways. All eyes were on Atalanta - Milan, watching for the chance that the runners up in the Coppa Italia would take down Milan to help Juventus gain eligibility for the Champions League. But in the end it was Hellas Verona that played spoiler for Aurelio De Laurentiis and the Detroit of Italy, drawing 1-1, sending The Old Lady out of the clutches of the Europa League. Epitomizing the saying: Fino Alla Fine!
Notice: All ratings are calculated through a stringent process utilizing statistics and the eye test called My Opinion and are most certainly incorrect.
Wojciech Szczesny - 6
Tek was put to work early having to come up with a save on De Silvestri in the 4’. Szczesny made a confident save on a straight on shot by Schouten in the 23’. Tek collected another direct shot by Vignato to retain a clean sheet in the 56’. Szczesny contributed one assist, three saves, one key pass, and five accurate long balls.
Juan Cuadrado - 6.5
For the most part, Cuadrado played around delivering crosses across the pitch to attempt to create something for his teammates, but was less effective than he is when positioned in the midfield. Cuadrado contributed one clearance, one blocked shot, one interception, two ground duels won, one aerial duel won, four key passes, two big chances created, and two successful dribbles.
Matthijs De Ligt - 6
The Dutch defender played his usual part in a defense that held Bologna scoreless in the first half, but rarely was the defense seriously challenged by the rossoblu. De Ligt contributed one clearance, one interception, one ground duel won, and one accurate long ball. Matthijs De Ligt was substituted off for Leonardo Bonucci at halftime.
Giorgio Chiellini - 6
The Italian veteran delivered a skillful deflection in the 32’ that stopped a solid shot on goal by the Bologna attack. Chiellini captained a Juventus defense that was less than challenged by the Bologna attack for a majority of the first half. Chiellini contributed one blocked shot and three accurate long balls. Chiellini was substituted off for Arthur in the 58’.
Alex Sandro - 5.5
Sandro delivered potentially the least memorable performance on the pitch today, but that says very little as overall it was a day for celebration. Sandro contributed three clearances, three interceptions, one ground duel won, and one successful dribble.
Dejan Kulusevski - 6.5
The Swede saved possession early in the match that led to the pass to Rabiot in the 6’ setting up the chain of events that opened up scoring for the good guys. Kulusevski delivered another great pass to Rabiot in the 45’ that led to the French player scoring the third goal of the match for Juventus. Kulusevski had a solid shot on toward goal in the 48’, but the shot soared over the crossbar. Kulusevski contributed one assist, four key passes, two big chances created, one shot off target, one shot blocked, one successful dribble, two ground duels won, and one offside.
Danilo Luiz da Silva - 6
Danilo delivered a terribly weak pass back to Szczesny that was far off target and rolled out of bounds gifting Bologna a free corner in the 42’. Outside of one sorry decision the Brazilian continued to deliver a solid performance in the midfield. Danilo contributed one key pass, one accurate long ball, two clearances, and one blocked shot.
Adrien Rabiot - 6.5
The Frenchman missed an early shot at a goal, hitting it off of the crossbar in the 6’, but was luckily caught and put back in by a chasing Cheisa. Adrien Rabiot would get his goal later though as a well delivered pass from Dejan Kulusevski gave the midfielder a one-on-one with the keeper to easily tuck it away for the third goal of the match in the 45’. Rabiot contributed one goal, one accurate long ball, two shots on target, one shot blocked, one successful dribble, one hit the woodwork, one big chance missed, one ground duel won, and one blocked shot.
Federico Chiesa - 6.5
The second highest scorer on the squad struck early in the 6’ with a putback on a Rabiot ricochet off the crossbar set up by a Kulusevski play on the ball. Chiesa shot a dangerous curving shot in the 51’ that just swung out past the right post. Chiesa contributed one goal, one key pass, two accurate long balls, one shot on target, one shot off target, one successful dribble, one ground duel won, and one clearance. Federico Chiesa was substituted off for Weston McKennie in the 58’.
Paulo Dybala - 7.5
The Argentinian delivered a perfectly placed ball, following some skillful dribbling inside the box, that appeared to have the angle to score on its own, but Alvaro Morata ensured Juventus would tally goal number two with a header into the back of the net in the 29’. Dybala just barely missed a shot past the right post in the 52’. Paulito took another one from deep for the hell of it in the 78’, but was fairly easily stopped by the keeper. Dybala missed another late attempt in the 87’ when his shot was blocked by the keeper. Dybala contributed one assist, three shots on target, three shots off target, one shot blocked, three successful dribbles, one hit the woodwork, one big chance missed, two key passes, one accurate long ball, one big chance created, seven ground duels won, and two tackles.
Alvaro Morata - 7.5
Morata capitalized with a header on a spectacular play by Paulo Dybala to dribble the ball past the keeper Skorupski to score a second goal for the Old Lady. Morata was penalized with a yellow card for a tackle foul in the 37’. Morata found the back of the net on a run out in the 47’, was originally believed to be offside, but the goal counted after review to make the match 4-0. Morata had two shots blocked by Soumaoro in the 53’ where at least one, if not both, was a handball that the referee refused to call. Morata made a huge chance to make the fifth score of the match, but shot just wide of the goal in the 57’. Morata took a poor shot in the 88’ that missed wide and hit the side of the net. Morata contributed two goals, two shots on target, two shots off target, one shot blocked, two successful dribbles, one big chance created, one key pass, one accurate cross, four ground duels won, three aerial duels won, and one tackle.
Leonardo Bonucci (↔️ Matthijs De Ligt) - 6
Following some rough play and to prevent further injury to the Dutch player, Matthijs De Ligt was pulled at halftime for the Italian defender. The Bonucci led defense gave up a Bologna goal in the 85’ to Orsolini. Bonucci had to be taken off of the field in the 90’ after he took a rough shot to the head causing him to bleed. Bonucci contributed one clearance, one blocked shot, one interception, one ground duel won, two accurate long balls, and one successful dribble.
Weston McKennie (↔️ Federico Chiesa) - N/A
Not enough information for rating. McKennie was penalized with a yellow card in the 65’.
Arthur Melo (↔️ Giorgio Chiellini) - N/A
Not enough information for rating.
Federico Bernardeschi (↔️ Danilo Luiz da Silva) - N/A
Not enough information for rating.
Carlo Pinsoglio (↔️ Wojciech Szczesny) - N/A
Not enough information for rating.
Andrea Pirlo - 7
Pirlo stunned fans and media alike with the decision to sit Ronaldo and start Morata and Dybala in his stead. The choice proved to be a solid one as the Juventus assault took off early and never looked back, amounting to a 3-0 lead before halftime. Thanks to some help from Verona, Juventus leapfrogged Napoli for the final spot in the Champions League. What this means, if anything, for the future of Pirlo on the Juventus bench remains to be seen.
Follow Justin Soforo on Twitter @JustinSoforo