Serie A PREVIEW | Juventus v Atalanta

A feisty fixture is on the menu this weekend as second-placed Juventus face top-four chasing Atalanta at the Allianz Stadium. 

Juventus endured a dip in form since drawing 1-1 with Empoli in January as the stalemate was followed up with consecutive defeats against Inter and Udinese. The dropped points from the matches helped league leaders Inter to go clear at the top by 15 points and the Bianconeri’s distance from third-placed Milan was reduced to just a point. 

Massimiliano Allegri’s men got back to winning ways versus Frosinone in a game which required Daniele Rugani’s added time header to seal the three points for them. However, Juventus’ charge was shortlived as they suffered a frustrating 2-1 defeat to outgoing Scudetto champions Napoli at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona. Khvicha Kvaratskhelia gave the hosts the lead just before the break. While Federico Chiesa’s 81st-minute equaliser expected to shift the momentum towards the visitors, the Partenopei held onto their nerves to grab the win through Giacomo Raspadori’s late strike. 

Juventus’ previous clash against tomorrow’s opponents ended in a goalless draw earlier this season but they will hope to consolidate their position in second place with a win. 

Meanwhile, Atalanta have a challenging task to face this weekend as they have not been in good form recently. La Dea are winless in their last four games across all competitions as they dropped crucial points against Inter, Bologna and Milan. 

Currently sitting in 6th place in the league standings, Gian Piero Gasperini’s men are five points away from the fourth-placed Bologna and are three points clear of chasing pack Napoli. The Bergamo fans would have hoped for their team to secure at least a win over one of the top-four opponents they faced in recent matchdays but the squad failed to reach the necessary heights, thus denting their hopes of playing in the Champions League next season.

Atalanta have a crucial fixture coming up following this weekend’s match as they host Sporting Lisbon in the second leg of the Europa League last-16 clash after settling for a 1-1 draw in their previous outing. This upcoming Serie A matchday is significant for La Dea as if Bologna and Roma lose their respective games, it could open up a chance for Gasperini to make his team climb the standings late on.

Results from their last five matches across all competitions


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Team News

Massimiliano Allegri will have to start Arkadiusz Milik upfront for the match as Dusan Vlahovic is set to miss the game after getting his fifth booking of the season against Napoli.

Southampton loanee Carlos Alcaraz is ruled out for two weeks as he has suffered a hamstring problem.

Weston Mckennie, Adrien Rabiot, Moise Kean, Mattia De Sciglio and goalkeeper Mattia Perin are out of this contest with respective injuries. 

As for Atalanta, Gian Piero Gasperini will have a full squad to choose his starting line-up from. The only player who will be out of this fixture is Emil Holm due to a suspension. 

Charles De Ketelaere, Teun Koopmeiners and Ademola Lookman are set to return to the starting eleven after coming on as substitutes versus Sporting. Marco Carnesecchi is expected to start in between the sticks after being replaced by Juan Musso for the European outing. 

Predicted XIs

Juventus (3-5-2): Szczesny; Rugani, Bremer, Sandro; Weah, Cambiaso, Locatelli, Miretti, Iling-Junior; Milik, Chiesa.

Atalanta (3-4-1-2): Carnesecchi; Scalvini, Djimsiti, Kolasinac; Hateboer, de Roon, Ederson, Ruggeri; Pasalic; De Ketelaere, Miranchuk.


Trambak Bhattacherjee | GIFN





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