Prediction: Correct Score 3-0 Juventus
Juventus will be trying to take a significant step towards yet another Serie A crown in the latest instalment of the Turin derby on Saturday afternoon.
Heading into the match, the Old Lady sit four points clear of nearest challengers Lazio, with nine matches of the season left to play. Meanwhile, Torino have targets of their own as they sit only six points clear of the drop zone so are under threat of being dragged into the relegation battle in the final few weeks of the season.
Despite a tricky return after lockdown, having drawn consecutive matches against AC Milan and Napoli in the Coppa Italia, the latter seeing Maurizio Sarri’s troops beaten in the final of the competition, Juventus seem to have recovered their form in the league. The team have won their last three Serie A matches since returning, scoring nine and conceding just one in their recent 3-1 success against Genoa. That means that Juventus have now racked up six consecutive victories in the league, their longest winning run since Sarri took over from former boss Max Allegri. They are also imperious on home soil under the Italian, being in the midst of a seven-match winning run and a 35-game undefeated streak. Those numbers are even more impressive considering they have only conceded eight goals in the league at home since the start of the season. It’s no surprise then that Juventus boast the best defence in Serie A having only shipped 25 goals in 29 matches thus far so it might well be a tough ask for Torino to break that stubborn resistance despite the derby setting.
Sarri still has a few significant problems in defence with a handful of significant injuries. Full-backs Matteo De Sciglio and Alex Sandro remain restricted to the sidelines and are joined by centre-back Merih Demiral and Giorgio Chiellini. Elsewhere, Sami Khedira is still out having not appeared since November. Miralem Pjanic is still eligible to play for the Old Lady despite confirmation of his upcoming move to Spanish giants Barcelona.
Away from Juventus, it has not quite been the return to action that Moreno Longo and his charges would have wanted. In four matches, Torino have only managed to win one, the 1-0 success against Udinese. Elsewhere, they have claimed one draw, as well as consecutive defeats to Cagliari and Lazio. That all means that the dreadful form that the team was experiencing before football in Italy was put on hold has not really changed at all. That aforementioned success against Udinese was their only victory in Serie A in their last ten matches. As a matter fact, only bottom two, SPAL and Brescia, have lost more than Torino this season. It is a dramatic turnaround for the worse at the Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino, with the team having been as high as eighth in mid-January and having their sights set on European football. They now languish in 13th place and could be just three points above the relegation zone should results go against them this weekend.
The only injury worry that Torino have to contend with is the absence of midfielder Daniele Baselli who looks set to be out until at least the end of the year. Elsewhere, Longo will hope to be able to once again call on the services of striker Andrea Belotti. The Italian has scored in each of the last three Serie A matches, his longest scoring run in the league since 2016.
Key Facts To Consider
- Juventus have a better all-time record between the two sides (W105, D64, L73)
- Torino have not won away to Juventus since a 2-1 victory in the 1994/95 season
- The Old Lady has kept clean sheets in five out of their last six matches against Torino
- Maurizio Sarri has only ever lost one match against Torino throughout his career, that defeat coming with Pescara in 2005
- Andrea Belotti has failed to score against Juventus in his last six Serie A appearances against them
Surely everything points to a Juventus victory on Saturday. From both team’s opposing form coming into the clash, to Juventus’ superiority of their near neighbours for the last two decades, the Old Lady should be confident of racking up a confident win which will give them a significant boost in the race for the Serie A crown.
Prediction: Correct Score 3-0 Juventus
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