Friday, January 27, 2023

Juventus 3-3 Atalanta: Danilo snatches draw after points deduction for Bianconeri

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 22 Jan 2023


Juventus responded to their Serie A points deduction with a thrilling 3-3 draw against Atalanta as Danilo’s inventive goal proved Ademola Lookman’s brace in vain.

Juve were deducted 15 points on Friday after an investigation into past transfer dealings, which the club are expected to appeal, but battled to share the spoils at Allianz Stadium.

Arkadiusz Milik sent the Bianconeri into the break leading after Angel Di Maria cancelled out Lookman’s opener, but Joakim Maehle restored parity immediately into the second half.

Lookman edged Atalanta ahead once more, but Danilo powered a smart free-kick routine home to move Juve – who were third before the punishment – into ninth.

A Wojciech Szczesny error handed Atalanta an early lead as Lookman’s right-footed drive squirmed through the goalkeeper’s grasp, before Manuel Locatelli fired just over in response.

Juve were soon level after the VAR intervened for an Ederson Silva foul on Nicolo Fagioli, with Di Maria subsequently converting from the penalty spot into the bottom-right corner.

Fagioli was pivotal again as his right-wing cross found Milik, who angled a right-footed finish into the bottom-right corner, though Juve’s advantage was short-lived after the interval.

Lookman rolled in Maehle to prod past Szczesny before the Nigeria winger headed Jeremie Boga’s left-wing cross into the far corner seven minutes later.

Danilo arrowed a 20-yard strike under the Atalanta wall and into the bottom-left corner to equalise after Di Maria’s back-heel free-kick routine, though neither side could find a late winner in a frenetic contest.

What does it mean? Another stalemate for Juve and Atalanta

Upon the announcement of Juve’s punishment, the club’s lawyers labelled the decision as a “clear injustice towards millions of fans” as the Bianconeri outlined their intentions to appeal the deduction.

While any slight hope of Champions League qualification may rely on off-field proceedings, Juve’s players responded with a credible performance against Atalanta, who are now just two points off the top four.

Albeit, Juve must be wondering what they have to do to defeat Atalanta, with this an eighth stalemate in the past 12 league meetings between the pair – no Serie A fixture has produced more since 2017.

Lively Lookman

Lookman became the fourth Atalanta player to score 10 or more goals after 19 matches in his first Serie A campaign, before taking his tally to 11 with a composed header.

Jorgen Leschly Sorensen (1949-50), Karl Aage Hansen (1949-50) and Poul Rasmussen (1952-53) are the only others to achieve the feat as Lookman continues to prove his worth to Gian Piero Gasperini.

Defensive concerns for Juve

While a battling performance against top-four chasers Atalanta may earn some plaudits, the Bianconeri’s defensive showings may cause some concern for Massimiliano Allegri.

For the first time since November 1988, Juve have conceded eight goals across their last two Serie A games, after a 5-1 defeat to Napoli and the six-goal thriller here.

Key Opta facts

– Atalanta are unbeaten in their last six Serie A matches against Juve (W2 D4), equalling their longest undefeated run against the Bianconeri in the top flight: six matches without losing between 1963 and 1966.

– Lookman is the first Atalanta player to score braces in three straight games in all competitions since the 2006-07 season.

– Di Maria has scored in two consecutive Serie A matches for the first time. His goal was his first penalty since August 2019 for Paris Saint-Germain against Metz.

– Juve are unbeaten in their last 13 Serie A home games (W8 D5), the longest such run in the Italian top flight.

What’s next?

Juve host Monza on January 29, while Atalanta are at home to Sampdoria the day before


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