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6 April 2013
• Juventus Stadium, Torino
Referee: S. Peruzzo
• Attendance: 38790
M. Vučinić 72', 78'
E. Cascione 83'
So, Juventus move closer to a record 29th Scudetto title and can now switch their attentions to the Champions League as they look to overturn Bayern Munich's two-goal deficit on Wednesday night. Pescara return to action when they face fellow strugglers Siena at home next weekend. Thanks for joining me, Max Bentley, on this Goal.com live commentary. Until next time, goodbye.
Cristian Bucchi can take a lot of positives from that game however and will know his side still stand a chance of survival if they can perform with the same defensive resilience in their remaining matches. However, the fact that it took until the 83rd minute to register their first shot on target demonstrates that much work needs to be done.
FULL TIME: JUVENTUS 2 - 1 PESCARA. The Bianconeri storm twelve points clear of Napoli courtesy of a double from Mirko Vucinic. The home side dominated proceedings but had to wait until the 72nd minute when Giuseppe Rizzo hauled down Arturo Vidal and received the red card. Substitute Emmanuele Cascione pulled one back seven minutes from time with a screamer from distance but it is now only one point in twelve games for the Delfini as a Serie B future looms.
90' + 3'
Zanon lumps a long ball into the Juventus box but once again it is wastefully overhit and Storari claims. Seconds remaining...
90' + 2'
Juventus are making their numerical advantage count by switching the ball from side to side. It seems the Bianconeri are set to go twelve points clear at the Serie A summit.
90' + 1'
Juventus are looking a little nervous here and Storari is forced into his first save of the match when Sculli controls a long ball over the top of the defence before stinging the fingertips of the goalkeeper with a well-struck left-footed drive. Can Pescara snatch an unlikely equaliser? Two minutes of stoppage time remaining.
Pescara have an opportunity to snatch an equaliser when they win a freekick deep inside the Juventus half, but the set-piece is disappointingly overhit and Storari claims.
Yellow Card Francesco Modesto
Quagliarella goes for the spectacular when he cushions Lichtsteiner's pass before sending an acrobatic effort over Pelizzoli's goal.
Quagliarella nearly ends the visitor's hopes once and for all when he twists inside Capuano but his left-footed effort is comfortably foiled by Pelizzoli.
Goal Emmanuel Cascione
PESCARA PULL ONE BACK! Emmanuele Cascione robs the ball from Matri before sending a stunning left-footed strike from distance past Storari and into the top corner. Wonderful finish from the Pescara midfielder. Can the visitors make mission impossible possible?
Alessandro Matri nearly scores with his first touch when he latches onto Quagliarella's lay-off but watches his effort bobble just wide of the far post.
Leonardo Bonucci is the next to be rested as he is substituted for Chilean defender Mauricio Isla.
Vucinic will not be able to take the matchball home today as he is rested for the last ten minutes or so. Alessandro Matri is the man to replace him.
Assist Kwadwo Asamoah
Goal Mirko Vučinić
2-0 JUVENTUS! Vucinic notches his second goal of the game and his 13th of the season, receiving Asamoah's pass with his back to goal before muscling off his marker and curling an effort past the outstretched fingertips of Pelizzoli and into the far corner. Fine finish from the Montenegrin. Game over.
Paul Pogba bursts through the midfield before producing a neat turn to evade Sculli but can only find the gloves of Pelizzoli with his shot. Could the floodgates open now for Juventus?
JUVENTUS HAVE THE BALL IN THE NET...BUT IT'S OFFSIDE. Vidal slips a neat ball behind the Pescara defence which Vucinic slots home, only to be denied by the linesman's flag.
Yellow Card Mirko Vučinić
Mirko Vucinic decides to celebrate by taking his shorts off and is consequently booked by the referee,
Penalty Goal Mirko Vučinić
1-0 JUVENTUS! Pelizzoli has been the hero so far but he can do nothing about that one as Vucinic thumps the penalty into the bottom left corner. Juventus finally get the goal their endeavours deserve.
Red Card Giuseppe Rizzo
PENALTY FOR JUVENTUS! A neat freekick routine from the home side results in Vidal being hauled to the floor by Giuseppe Rizzo in the box. The Pescara midfielder denied a clear goalscoring opportunity and receives his marching orders.
Per Billeskov Kroldrup
Nicolás Bianchi Arce
Last change from Bucchi as Nicolas Bianchi Arce replaces Per Kroldrup.
The home fans are beginning to get restless here as Lichtsteiner's low cross is well smothered by Pelizzoli under pressure from Vucinic. I think they were expecting a few goals this afternoon.
Quagliarella looks to shoot on his left foot but his strike across goal is blocked excellently by Zanon. Can they hold onto their clean sheet?
Yellow Card Birkir Bjarnason
Bjarnason is the first Pescara man in the book after a tug on the shirt of Asamoah.
Ferdinando Sforzini has not had too much service for Pescara and he unleashes an ambitious effort from distance which sails over the crossbar.
Pescara make a second change as Gianluca Caprari has picked up a knock. He is replaced by Emmanuele Casicone who scored against Juventus in the 6-1 defeat in November.
Giaccherini has two efforts in quick succession, his first strike blocked by Kroldrup before his next effort blazes high over the bar. Can Juve find the breakthrough?
Giaccherini lays the ball into the path of Vucinic on the edge of the box, but the Montenegrin is immediately herded by three Pescara defenders and is dispossessed. Brilliant pressing from the visitors.
Bjaranason has fresh legs and he does well to win a corner for the visitors. Caprari whips in the set-piece but Peluso stands strong to deny Kroldrup from heading in at the back post.
In fact, Pescara coach Cristian Bucchi is looking for his first points in charge. Three defeats from three games so far.
How many chances do Juventus need? Vidal delivers an inviting corner from the right but it is glanced inches wide of the post by the head of Bonucci. Are we going to see one of the shocks of the season here?
Juan Quintero has not been able to make a telling contribution today and he is replaced by the more defensively-minded midfielder Birkir Bjarnason.
Juventus continue to probe and Lichtsteiner is furious when Vucinic opts to strike from a narrow angle with the Swiss wing-back lurking at the back post.
With Pescara defenders backing off him, Vidal opts to strike from distance but the Chilean's venomous effort is straight at Pelizzoli.
Juventus are getting their shots away now. First, Marrone sees his volley from the resulting corner fly over the bar before Lichtsteiner fires an effort from the edge of the box wide of the goal. Can they find that elusive first goal? 35 minutes remaining.
Moments after Vucinic's feeble attempt is saved by Pelizzoli, the Pescara goalkeeper is again called upon to tip Quagliarella's fine volley over the crossbar. A man-of-the-match display from the goalkeeper so far.
The wing-backs are frequently getting into advanced positions this afternoon but Lichtsteiner's cross from the right is just too high for Asamoah at he back post. Could Conte be tempted to make a change? The Bianconeri will not want to drop points here.
Yellow Card Leonardo Bonucci
First signs of frustration creeping into play as Leonardo Bonucci receives his tenth caution of the season.
GOOD CHANCE FOR JUVENTUS! Kwadwo Asamoah bursts down the left wing before fizzing a cross across goal which Pelizzoli spills, but Vucinic miskicks his effort wide of the post. Let-off for Pescara there.
Incidentally, Pescara's Giuseppe Sculli started his career at Juventus but did not make any first-team appearances. He'll be looking to make an impression today.
Pescara threaten when Sforzini finds Quintero on the edge of the box, but the Colombian's goalbound effort is blocked by Peluso.
Pescara get the second half underway...but Juventus retrieve the ball within the first 15 seconds.
It seems that the best Pescara can hope for is a 0-0 stalemate as Bucchi's outfit have only scored once in their last six Serie A matches. They did not register a single shot on Storari's goal in that first half.
Ivan Pelizzoli is certainly among the candidates for performance of the season after an impressive string of saves in that first half. The Delfini have only kept five clean sheets all season. Can they claim another here?
Are Juventus missing the creativity of Andrea Pirlo in the midfield? Will they be able to make their pressure count in the second half or will Pescara continue to frustrate them? Remember that you can let me know your thoughts and predictions on the match via Twitter @MaxBentley1.
HALF TIME: JUVENTUS 0 - 0 PESCARA. It's been one-way traffic from the Italian champions but they have not been able to make their pressure count, mainly due to the heroics of the Delfini goalkeeper Ivan Pelizzoli. Fabio Quagliarella has seen an effort strike the post but the deadlock is yet to be broken. All square at the break!
Zanon is the next player to go down after a mistimed challenge from Asamoah. Juventus have looked threatening but Bucchi will be delighted with the performance of his side and in particular, of his 32-year-old goalkeeper.
Juventus take the corner short and Vidal picks out Pogba with a deep cross, but the Frenchman's header glances just wide.
PELIZZOLI DENIES JUVENTUS AGAIN! Asamoah springs down the left before laying the ball back for Giaccherini whose well-struck effort across goal is palmed behind brilliantly for a corner.
Eugenio Togni and Giuseppe Rozzi have put in a real shift for Pescara in the midfield. Not quite the first half many people imagined here in Turin.
QUAGLIARELLA HITS THE POST! The substitute comes so close to giving his side the lead when he collects Vidal's pass outside the box before thumping a low effort which strikes the woodwork via the fingertips of Pelizzoli. Juventus are getting closer.
Lichtsteiner is getting forward at will down the right and the Swiss wing-back produces a brilliant cutback to pick out Giaccherini but the midfielder miscues his shot wide of the left post.
Juventus pass the ball around neatly on the edge of the Pescara box but there is no black and white shirt to meet Lichtsteiner's teasing low cross at the front post.
Gianluca Caprari goes down under a challenge from Pogba rather theatrically on the edge of the box but the referee rightfully waves play on. Cristian Bucchi will be hoping his side can hold on until the break.
Quagliarella looks to make an instant impression when he dashes across the face of the six-yard box in an attempt to meet Vucinic's low cross, but Capuano sticks closely to the Italian forward and makes a brilliant sliding clearance.
Sebastian Giovinco cannot continue and he is replaced by Fabio Quagliarella, who scored a hattrick against the Delfini earlier this season.
Pescara find space on the edge of the Juventus box but the ball is chipped over the home defence lazily and Storari comfortably claims. With build-up play like that, it's understandable why Pescara have the worst goal tally in the division.
Worry for Juventus as Giovinco goes down when shooting under a challenge from Capuano. The striker immediately signals to the bench and seems to be in some discomfort. He's only just returned from injury after that Cambiasso horror tackle last weekend.
Giovinco collects Giaccherini's pass on the edge of the box and shapes to shoot but Capuano gets across quickly to close down the striker's effort. The ball rebounds for Pogba, but the Frenchman slices his shot well wide.
GREAT SAVE FROM PELIZZOLI! Vucinic is in the thick of things at the moment and he lofts a perfectly-weighted pass into the box which Vidal meets with a firm header, forcing the Pescara shotstopper into a wonderful reflex save. He's keeping his side in the contest at the moment.
Good combination play there as Vucinic and Giovinco link up excellently but Pelizzoli is off his line quickly to steal the ball off the toes of the Montenegrin.
Mirko Vucinic looks to play a smart one-two with Asamoah in the Pescara box but watches his return pass intercepted by Zanon. The Montenegrin is looking to get back in his stride after recently recovering from illness.
Pescara launch a rare attack down the right flank but there is no blue shirt gambling at the back post and Zanon's cross runs out for a goalkick.
Marco Storari is enjoying a rare run-out for Juventus this afternoon but the reserve goalkeeper has yet to touch the ball for the home side. One-way traffic so far.
GOOD CHANCE FOR JUVENTUS! Vidal produces a neat pass to find Giovinco in the box and the diminuitive striker dips past the challenge of Kroldrup but can only shoot at Pelizzoli with his toe-poked effort. You sense the first goal is coming.
Pescara have achieved only ten points from a possible last 57. It's no surprise that the Biancazzurri have dropped to the foot of the Serie A table. Unless they can pull off a miraculous survival, it seems they will be destined for Serie B football next season.
Juventus are starting to get their shots away now but Pogba watches his latest effort skew wide of the right post. How long can Pescara hold out for?
GOOD SAVE FROM PELIZZOLI! This time the Old Lady attack down the right and Lichtsteiner picks out Giaccherini excellently with his cross but the Italian international's sweetly-struck volley is well palmed away by the goalkeeper.
Brilliant play from Asamoah as he manages to burst free down the left and his dangerous low cross is cleared by Capuano. Juventus slowly moving through the gears now.
Giuseppe Sculli finds himself in a brilliant position on the left-hand side of the box but his cross is disappointing and fails to beat the first man, Luca Marrone. Pescara will need to make the most out of those positions if they are to achieve anything from this contest.
Kwadwo Asamoah looks to jink past Caprari down the left-hand side but the Pescara midfielder stands his ground excellently to make the tackle. The ball falls for Vucinic 25 yards from goal but his effort whistles over the bar.
In Pirlo's absence, it seems Paul Pogba is the man looking to pull the strings and he takes the first shot of the match when he collects Vidal's pass on the edge of the box before blazing high over the crossbar.
Incidentally, in the reverse fixture back in November, Juventus were 5-1 up at half-time before going on to win 6-1. Not too many signs of a goal-filled first-half so far.
Juventus knocking the ball about freely in the early stages but they are yet to test Ivan Pelizzoli.
Juventus fans will also be keeping an eye on Pescara attacker Juan Fernando Quintero who has been linked with the Turin side. Can the Colombian make an impression?
The home side are enjoying plenty of possession in the early stages and will be looking to break the deadlock early in this game. A chance for some fringe players to impress this afternoon.
Juventus get the game underway and there is a superb atmosphere at the Juventus Stadium. Only three points will do for the Bianconeri.
The Old Lady have lost only once in their last seven encounters against Pescara, however, that was a 5-1 defeat back in 1993. They have never been beaten at home to the Delfini. Can Brucchi's team revive their relegation hopes with a shock victory this evening?
Cristian Bucchi has several absentees as Mervan Celik sits out a ban, joining the injured Vladimir Weiss, Antonio Balzano, Antonio Bocchetti, Gaetano D’Agostino, Ante Vukusic, Luciano Zauri and Uros Cosic. Ivan Pelizzoli starts in goal whilst Ferdinando Sforzini takes the lone starting berth up front.
With one eye on the return leg against Bayern Munich this coming Wednesday, Antonio Conte makes several changes. Gianluigi Buffon is suffering from flu and is replaced between the sticks by Marco Storari. Giorgio Chiellini and Andrea Barzagli are suspended, so Luca Marrone and Federico Peluso take their places in the heart of defence. Andrea Pirlo and Claudio Marchisio are rested so Emanuele Giaccherini and Kwadwo Asamoah come into the midfield. Sebastian Giovinco and Mirko Vucinic start up front.
PESCARA (4-2-3-1): Pelizzoli; Zanon, Kroldrup, Capuano, Modesto; Rizzo, Togni; Caprari, Quintero, Sculli; Sforzini.
JUVENTUS (3-5-2): Storari; Bonucci, Marrone, Peluso; Lichtsteiner, Vidal, Pogba, Giaccherini, Asamoah; Vucinic, Giovinco.
Without any further ado, here are today's lineups...
Juventus go into this match on the back of four consecutive home clean sheets in Serie A and have the tightest defence in the division, having conceded only 19 goals. Can they keep the Delfini attack at bay this afternoon?
Pescara have conceded a whopping 61 goals in 30 league games this season, including six against Juventus in the reverse fixture at Stadio Adriatico. They have also scored the least goals in Serie A (21).
Juventus look to bounce back from their disappointing 2-0 UEFA Champions League defeat to Bayern Munich this afternoon when they host a bottom-of-the-table Pescara side who have lost ten of their last eleven Serie A matches. Antonio Conte's outfit have the chance to go a massive twelve points clear at the summit with victory. Can they edge closer to that record 29th Scudetto title? Bringing you all the action from the Juventus Stadium, my name is Max Bentley. Feel free to let me know your thoughts and predictions on the game via Twitter @MaxBentley1.
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