Reigning Serie A champions Juventus play host to the darling of Italian football, Atalanta, on Wednesday at 5.30pm.
Juventus XI: Szczesny; De Ligt, Bonucci, Danilo; Cuadrado, Bentancur, Arthur, McKennie, Chiesa; Morata, Ronaldo.
Atalanta XI: Gollini; Djimsiti, Romero, Palomino; Hateboer, De Roon, Freuler, Gosens; Malinovsky, Pessina, Zapata.
Where to watch Juventus vs Atalanta on TV:
- UK: Premier Sports 1
- US: ESPN+
Where to live stream Juventus vs Atalanta:
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Scoreline prediction: Juventus 2-1 Atalanta
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Juventus vs Atalanta build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
The Old Lady remain unbeaten under Andrea Pirlo this season, one of only two clubs alongside early pace-setters AC Milan, but that could all change when Gian Piero Gasperini’s great entertainers travel to Turin tonight.
Despite going the opening 11 games unbeaten, Juventus currently find themselves in fourth, owing to their five draws, but the gap between themselves and top spot remains just four points, and Pirlo will be eager to reduce that gulf further when Atalanta come to town.
The Goddess enjoyed a barnstorming and free-scoring season last time out, amassing a quite ridiculous 98 goals in 2019/20. For context, that was 22 more than eventual champions Juve. However, this season has been slightly more subdued, with Atalanta down in eighth and talk of a dressing room bust-up dominating the back pages.
The alleged falling out between talisman Alejandro Gomez and manager Gasperini was fuelled by comments put forward by the Argentine attacker, who wrote on his Instagram that “when I leave, you will know the truth about everything.” Not ideal preparation on the eve of a crunch clash with current Scudetto holders Juve.
- Juventus (vs Genoa): Szczesny; De Ligt, Bonucci, Sandro; Cuadrado, McKennie, Bentancur, Rabiot, Chiesa; Ronaldo, Dybala.
- Atalanta (vs Fiorentina): Gollini; Toloi, Romero, Djimsiti; Hateboer, De Roon, Freuler, Gosens; Malinovskiy, Pessina, Zapata.
Centre-back duo Giorgio Chiellini and Merih Demiral remain absent for Juve, so Matthijs de Ligt will continue to accumulate precious minutes following his protracted spell on the sidelines. Arthur was rested at the weekend but could be in line for a starting berth on Wednesday.
Gomez is unlikely to play for Atalanta again if his recent comments are anything to go by, while Josip Ilicic, Mario Pasalic, Mattia Caldara and Aleksei Miranchuk were all absent for the weekend win over Fiorentina but could be recalled later this week.
Players to watch:
- Juventus: Bergamo has proven a goldmine for emerging talent in recent years, and one of the finest gems to hail from the production line played just three times for Atalanta before Juve snapped him up. Dejan Kulusevski spent last season on loan at Parma, where his performances were such that Juve wasted no time in luring the talented Swede to Turin. The Old Lady splurged around £40m for Kulusevski last January before loaning him back to Parma and, already this season, he has two goals to his name and ranks second for successful take-ons (13) and chances created (15) among Juve players.
- Atalanta: If Gomez is to miss this match, and potentially all future matches for Atalanta, then Gasperini will need another creative focal point to step up to the plate and deliver for his side. Few possess the repertoire of tricks, dribbling virtuosity and vision of Gomez, but in Ruslan Malinovskiy, Atalanta have a competent attacking midfielder who can unlock doors and produce the occasional goal here and there. The 27-year-old is rated highly among Atalanta fans and has a rocket of a left foot (check out his finish against Lazio last season). He netted in the most recent game in the absence of Gomez, against Fiorentina, and he scored in the 2-2 draw with Juve last season, so he is a man to step up when Atalanta need him.
Serie A 2020/21 recent form:
- Juventus: WWDWD
- Atalanta: WLDDW
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