Previewing Both Clubs Ahead of the Turin Derby

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The Turin Derby is one of the most underrated derbies in Italy, in my view. However, this weekend it should be fun to watch. It will take place at the Allianz Stadium this upcoming Saturday at noon ET. Here is my preview of both clubs as well as the most interesting matchup coming into this game.

Juventus

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Coming into the Turin derby, Juve has looked shaky early on during the season. On paper, their squad has improved. However, I believe that because their manager, Andrea Pirlo, is inexperienced and due to Juve’s midfield being overhauled over the Summer, it’s been tough for Pirlo the find the right formation and balance for the squad. However, this match may present the opportunity to rebound. Juve’s backline will have their hands full trying to contain Andrea Belotti. If I were Pirlo, I’d deploy a 3-5-2, as Torino’s strength is mainly down the centre of the attacking half. An extra defender in the middle would provide extra security for aerial duels as well, as Belotti is great in the air.

Torino

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Again, it’s still early in the season. However, Torino under Giampaolo has looked atrocious, to say the least. Defensively, they look mediocre as well as in the midfield. Their saving grace so far has been their attack, especially Andrea Belotti. Andrea Belotti has performed superbly for il toro and could be the main reason Torino won’t get relegated this season. So far, he’s scored 7 goals in the league which is tied for third-highest in Serie A. Torino will be happy to know that Juve’s defence, particularly at centre-back has been vulnerable this season. Torino should look to exploit Juve down the middle in the attacking half. If I were Giampaolo, I would go with a 4-3-3 against Juve. They’ll need a lot of width to swing crosses into the box to the likes of Zaza and Belotti as Juve is particularly vulnerable with aerial balls. Torino will be hoping to get a result in this derby to boost the squad’s momentum, as they need it.

Most Interesting Matchup

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Usually, in a derby, there are several key matchups during a match that catch the viewer’s eyes. However, in the Derby Della Mole, I want to point to one particular match that I think will be the most interesting to watch and that’s Belotti against Juve’s central defenders. Like I pointed out earlier, Andrea Belotti is a handful to deal with. He’s not the most technically sound player and doesn’t possess top-class dribbling abilities. But, he’s very physically strong and is difficult to deal with inside the 18-yard box. Also, he possesses a powerful shot and is quick, so Juventus’ centre backs will have to focus on trying to limit him from getting open looks to shoot. I’m sure Belotti will be extra motivated to score during the derby, so this will be an interesting match, at least for me.

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3 Takeaways From Last Weekend’s Serie A Action

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Like usual, this past weekend of Serie A matches were amazing! As a result of the matches this past weekend, there were two managers fired, as well. This made this past weekend’s fixtures seem even more fascinating. So, here are 3 of my takeaways from last weekend’s Serie A matches!

 

1. JUVE SHOWED WHY THEY’VE KEEP WINNING THE SERIE A TITLE WHEN THEY FACED INTER.

 

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This past weekend, Juve were victors in the Derby D’Italia, beating Inter 2-1. However, this match demonstrated why they’ve won the scudetto 8 consecutive times. Not only did they get the job done, but they dominated such a big match in the Serie A. I’ve had my doubts about Maurizio Sarri ever since he got appointed to be the manager of the bianconeri. However, it seems as though the squad is beginning to learn how to fit within his system. In my view, Juve’s defence still needs work. However, Bonucci looks as though he is becoming comfortable with leading that backline. Despite, Juve’s key injuries, they don’t look like they’re missing a beat, whatsoever.

2. SAMPDORIA NEED TO GET THEIR ACT TOGETHER QUICKLY

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Last season, Sampdoria seemed like they had so much upside under Giampaolo. Then, he left and they appointed Eusebio Di Francesco. I must admit that before the season started, I had written a blog post that mentioned Sampdoria as being underrated with Di Francesco as their manager. However, I was completely wrong and instead, he was a bust at Sampdoria. After, only leading Sampdoria to one win in his seven matches on the touchline, it was inevitable that he’d be sacked and he was. Now, Sampdoria will need to get back to how they played last season if they want to finish in a mid-table spot by the end of the season. They will need to fix their issues fast, as they are currently on track to be relegated to Serie B by the end of this season.

3. AC MILAN WON AGAINST GENOA, BUT GIAMPAOLO IS NO LONGER THEIR MANAGER

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AC Milan has now gone through 8 different managers in 5 years as a result of this sacking. The weird part is that AC Milan’s upper-management decided to sack Giampaolo after they won against Genoa last Saturday. However, it is not surprising, as AC Milan’s upper-management seems to not have had patience with their managers over the past several seasons. I understand that under Giampaolo, AC Milan were performing way below par, but they should’ve given him more time to implement his philosophy with the squad. However, the club’s board has clearly not possessed patience for a while, in regards to the managers they’ve hired. As a result, they are a mess and all I will say to AC Milan’s new manager is good luck because whoever it is, will need a ton of it.

 

 

Previewing AC Milan VS. Fiorentina

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                      Image Credit: transfermarkt.com

Sunday’s match between AC Milan will be interesting, as both of them desperately need a result to boost the morale of not only their players, but also their respective clubs. So, here’s my preview of this match for both clubs.

    AC MILAN 

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     For the AC Milan players and their upper-management, the  previous two  results should be a huge wake up call. Not only did they lose to Inter in the Milan Derby last week, but they also lost 2-1 to Torino. Against Inter, they played a decent first half. Then, in the second half, they got dominated badly by the nerazzuri leading to a 2-0 loss. However, against Torino, AC Milan were getting their chances, but not converting on them. Their defense though, has been terrible these last couple of games. It could be because their midfield is weak as well, so that causes Milan’s backline to possess more pressure from opposing clubs. I don’t know how or when, but from a tactical perspective, that midfield will need to improve. It’ll especially have to move forward for this match against Fiorentina, as la viola is a very attack-minded squad and if AC Milan’s midfield is setup the way it has been so far this season, then it will get exposed terribly by  their dynamic offense.

FIORENTINA 

     

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    When Fiorentina began the season, they knew it was going to be a very tough set of matches early on, as they had to face Napoli, Juventus, Genoa, Sampdoria, and Atalanta. They were able to manage two draws and a win in their first five games. However, one thing that’ll still need to be improved on immensely is their backline. In their first 5 matches, they’ve conceded a total of 9 goals. That’s nuts! But, their offense seems perfectly fine. In their first five matches of the season, they’ve scored 8 goals. If Fiorentina wants to win this match and many other important ones, they’ll need to somehow find a way in which to concede a significantly lower amount of goals. The great thing about this Fiorentina side coming into this match is that with the ball they’re a fast moving and fluid offense. As a result, they can definitely exploit AC Milan’s vulnerable defense and below average midfield. It’ll be a tall order to get a result at the San Siro. But, it’s very possible.

I hope this fixture will be a fun one to watch. Also, I hope that both of these clubs will put on a showsand give Serie A fans a night to remember. The match will start at 2:45 pm Eastern Time, for those who want to watch.