Preview: Bologna – Juventus

Posted on 19/02/2010


Serie A Week 25 – 21/2/10 (14.00 UK)
Bologna – Juventus
Stadio Dall’Ara

Alberto Zaccheroni’s Juventus must defeat Bologna to prove they are at long last back on the right track in Serie A.

The relief was clear to see on the faces of club stalwarts Gigi Buffon and Alessandro Del Piero when Juve battled back to defeat Genoa 3-2 in Turin last week. It was a hugely significant win – Zaccheroni’s first since he replaced Ciro Ferrara in the Bianconeri hot-seat and only the second in two months of League action for the club.

Nonetheless even the staunchest Juve fanatic would admit their side was fortunate against Genoa. The team didn’t look particularly comfortable with Zaccheroni’s new 3-4-1-2 system and only came out on top thanks to a non existent penalty won and converted by Del Piero.

On the other hand the fighting spirit displayed by the players and the end of Amauri’s seemingly eternal goal drought are reasons for encouragement. Juve are now 6th, one point off fourth place and Champions League qualification, which can be their only realistic goal this season.

Hosts Bologna are in excellent form and well on their way to mid-table having climbed out of the relegation zone, but they will have to face Juventus without their captain and most potent weapon in the form of Marco Di Vaio.

Former Juve striker Di Vaio picked up an injury in the relegation dogfight with Livorno last week, having already scored the precious goal that gave the Rossoblu their 1-0 win. His absence could prompt a recall for another ex-Bianconero – Marcelo Zalayeta.

Coach Franco Colomba will fancy the chances of another giant killing since his charges have beaten Fiorentina and drawn with Milan in recent times. Under his predecessor Giuseppe Papadopulo the Felsinei held the Old Lady to a 1-1 draw in September’s reverse fixture, Martins Adailton hitting a dramatic late equaliser.

Massimo Mutarelli, Andrea Pisanu and Francesco Modesto accompany Di Vaio on Bologna’s injury list. Salvatore Lanna is suspended.

Juve’s injury crisis has eased, although key striker Vincenzo Iaquinta remains unavailable. Fabio Cannavaro is a doubt, while Christian Poulsen is not likely to be back until March.

Keep an eye on: Alessandro Del Piero (Juventus) – The captain has come under fire for the ease with which he tumbled to the ground to win the decisive penalty against Genoa, but more attention should have been paid to his first goal, a wonderful individual effort that began with a hearty slide tackle on Mimmo Criscito that Fabio Cannavaro would have been proud of.

Last five in Serie A: Bologna (D W D D W) Juventus (L L D D W)

Last season: Bologna 1-2 Juventus

Bologna (probable): Viviano; Raggi, Portanova, Moras, Zenoni; Busce, Mudingayi, Guana, Casarini; Gimenez, Zalayeta

Juventus (probable): Buffon; Cannavaro, Legrottaglie, Chiellini; Caceres, Marchisio, Sissoko, De Ceglie; Diego; Amauri, Del Piero

Ref: Luca Banti

Source: Football-Italia

Posted in: Preview, Serie A