PRE MATCH: VERONA VS JUVENTUS

After a much-needed win vs lowly Crotone, Juventus will try to continue their winning ways, as they travel to Verona to face a team that has won their three last home matches.


It was back to business as usual for Juventus last time out, following a challenging fortnight, as the Bianconeri continued their quest for a tenth successive title with a regulation 3-0 home win over hapless bottom side Crotone.


Their expected success brought at least a little relief for the stumbling Turin giants, who had been out-fought and out-thought in losses to both Napoli and Porto, after going out of the Coppa Italia to old rivals Inter.

Top-scoring talisman Cristiano erased a run of only one goal from his last five league starts against the Calabrian minnows, with yet another brace during the first half last Monday. Adding Crotone to the long list of top-flight teams he has now scored against, the Portuguese superstar has netted more than once in seven separate Serie A games this season - more than any other player in the top five European leagues.

Juve's ageless striker has now scored three in as many league appearances, having failed to find the net in his three previous outings - a relative drought by his own sky-high standards. Ronaldo's double strike saw him break clear at the top of the hotly-contested Capocannoniere charts too, ahead of Romelu Lukaku and Ciro Immobile on 18 goals.


Though the pressure on coach Andrea Pirlo's shoulders remains intense, his side's most recent win of an inconsistent period took full advantage of Roma's draw in Benevento to rise to third place in the standings and focuses faltering Milan in their crosshairs - with the once-distant Rossoneri now only four points ahead and having played a game more.


Furthermore, Juve has now kept a clean sheet in four of their last five league games (as many as in their previous 27) and is set to come up against the statistically weakest attack in the top half of the table this weekend.


Despite the gulf in stature between the two clubs, Verona has won four points from their last two matches against this week's visitors, having lost each of their previous three encounters. In fact, the Scaligeri could go unbeaten in three consecutive games versus Juventus for the first time since the 1980s on Saturday evening.


The first meeting this term ended 1-1, after goals from Andrea Favilli and Dejan Kulusevski, in the opening head-to-head between highly-rated Hellas tactician Ivan Juric and Juve's managerial rookie Pirlo.

However, the Venetian side has built their relative success upon a disciplined backline that has conceded far fewer than most, with only league leaders Inter, Napoli, and Juve keeping things tighter this term.

Certainly, this Saturday, that rearguard resilience will be needed up against top-quality opposition who have benefited from a rare midweek rest.


Final Analysis and Prediction:


Two particularly tight defenses come together at the Bentegodi, though the champions' backline is in disarray due to numerous injuries.


Though Verona was perhaps fortunate to come away with a draw against a dominant Juventus side in the first game last October, they pose a tough proposition on home turf and can push Juve all the way before succumbing to the Old Lady's greater individual quality in the end.


Final Prediction: Verona 0-2 Juventus







18 views0 comments
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Instagram