Fiorentina - Juventus Preview: Conte's men travel to Tuscany in bid to restore title challenge
The Old Lady desperately need three points on Saturday having drawn their last four on the bounce, but the same applies for a struggling Viola outfit languishing near the bottom
By Livio Caferoglu
Cassani, Gamberini, Natali, Pasqual
Behrami, Montolivo, Lazzari
Cerci, Amauri, Vargas
Lichtsteiner, Bonucci, Chiellini, De Ceglie
Vidal, Pirlo, Marchisio
Pepe, Matri, Vucinic
Fiorentina coach Delio Rossi is set to make one change from the side that lost 1-0 to Catania last weekend with Valon Behrami likely to come into the team for Ruben Olivera. Stevan Jovetic is also likely to miss out, despite his best efforts to shrug off a muscle injury that has kept him out since March 4.
Meanwhile for Juventus, Antonio Conte will be delighted to welcome back Giorgio Chiellini into the team after successfully recovering from a calf problem. The former Livorno man will partner fellow incoming defender Leonardo Bonucci, who has served his one-match ban.. Also, Emanuele Giaccherini looks set to be dropped for Arturo Vidal, who will return to the centre of midfield, but Martin Caceres is expected to miss out.
||DID YOU KNOW|
- Fiorentina have beaten Juventus just once in their last 20 meetings - a 3-2 win in Turin in March 2008.
- The Viola have conceded 234 goals against Juventus in Serie A - the most their opponents have scored against a single team.
- Fiorentina have won just once in their last six match matches, losing four times.
- Juventus are unbeaten in their last seven meetings with Fiorentina.
- They are still unbeaten in this campaign, but have drawn the most games (14); only Brest in France's Ligue 1 have drawn more games among the 'top five' European leagues with 15.
- Antonio Conte's side have drawn six of their last seven league games, including the last four.
- Interestingly, Juventus have found the net with just one of their last 60 shots on goal.
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Top 3 Predictions
Fiorentina 0-2 Juventus
- 22.65 %
Fiorentina 1-2 Juventus
- 13.15 %
Fiorentina 1-1 Juventus
- 11.22 %
|Serie A (SR-A)||20 Oct 2013||Fiorentina 4 - Juventus 2|
|Serie A (SR-A)||9 Feb 2013||Juventus 2 - Fiorentina 0|
|Serie A (SR-A)||25 Sep 2012||Fiorentina 0 - Juventus 0|
|Serie A (SR-A)||17 Mar 2012||Fiorentina 0 - Juventus 5|
|Serie A (SR-A)||25 Oct 2011||Juventus 2 - Fiorentina 1|
|8 Dec 2013||Roma 2 - Fiorentina 1||SR-A|
|2 Dec 2013||Fiorentina 4 - Hellas Verona 3||SR-A|
|28 Nov 2013||Paços Ferreira 0 - Fiorentina 0||EL|
|24 Nov 2013||Udinese 1 - Fiorentina 0||SR-A|
|10 Nov 2013||Fiorentina 2 - Sampdoria 1||SR-A|
|29||Lorenzo De Silvestri||Defender|
|11||Paolo De Ceglie||Defender|
|-||Alessandro Del Piero||Striker|
The Italo-Brazilian endured a nightmare spell in Turin after failing to justify his €22.8 million (£19m) transfer fee, and has not pulled up any trees since moving to Fiorentina in January. Nevertheless, the powerful hitman is sure to be pumped up for the occasion, and will hope to exert at least a degree of revenge on his former employers.
It really is set to be the tale of two misfiring strikers when the duo grace the Artemio Franchi on Saturday, but Matri has arguably even more reason to put in a noteworthy shift. Despite a prolific start to the campaign, the ex-Cagliari star has netted just once since the end of January, forcing Conte to look towards the likes Marco Borriello and Fabio Quagliarella, both whom haven't fared much better. He will hope to find his shooting boots once more against Fiorentina.
This one has all the makings of an extremely edgy affair, with both sides struggling to register goals of late, but Juventus should nick all three points in the tightest of fashions and resurrect their faltering Scudetto tilt.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed