Juventus - Chievo Preview: Hosts hoping to go back on top of Serie A with three points against Flying Donkeys
The Bianconeri could return to the summit of the league standings if they win and Milan slip up in Sicily on Saturday
By Adam Scime
Lichtsteiner, Barzagli, Chiellini, De Ceglie
Giaccherini, Pirlo, Marchisio
Quagliarella, Matri, Vucinic
Sardo, Andreolli, Acerbi, Drame
Bradley, Rigoni, Hetemaj
Coming off earning a crucial point against title rivals AC Milan courtesy of Alessandro Matri's late strike at San Siro, Antonio Conte's side will hope to put even more pressure on the leaders this Sunday as they still have a game in hand despite being one point behind.
However, with midfielder Arturo Vidal suspended after picking up a late red card versus Milan and Pepe also banned, Juve are likely to drop their 3-5-2 experiment and utilise a 4-3-3 with the previously mentioned goalscorer Matri back in the starting XI at the expense of Marco Borriello.
Former Cesena star Emaneule Giaccherini will return to the midfield alongside Italy internationals Andrea Pirlo and Claudio Marchisio while Martin Caceres and Stephan Lichtsteiner will battle it out for a spot at right-back.
After a couple wins on the trot, Chievo sit in midtable and are nine points above the relegation zone, but veteran striker Sergio Pellissier is suspended so Italy Under-21 international Alberto Paloschi will likely have to toil on his own in attack.
Furthermore, coach Domenico Di Carlo will also be without Nikola Gulan. A serious muscle injury to the young Serbian midfielder is expected to keep the player on loan from Fiorentina out for the next few weeks.
||DID YOU KNOW?|
- Juventus are the only remaining team with an unbeaten record in Italy's top flight during the 2011-12 campaign (W13 D11 L0).
- The Bianconeri drew Chievo 0-0 earlier this season in Serie A at the Stadio Bentegodi.
- Mirko Vucinic has not scored for Juventus since a 1-1 draw with Cagliari on January 15.
- Chievo have scored just 21 goals this season in Serie A, and only Cesena have scored fewer.
- The Flying Donkeys have won three of their last five Serie A matches.
- Chievo have not lost to Juventus in their past four meetings, last winning 1-0 in January 2010 after a goal from Gennaro Sardo and drawing the following three encounters.
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Top 3 Predictions
Juventus 2-0 Chievo
- 35.93 %
Juventus 3-0 Chievo
- 23.71 %
Juventus 3-1 Chievo
- 6.52 %
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Feb 16, 2014||Juventus 3 - Chievo 1|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Sep 25, 2013||Chievo 1 - Juventus 2|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Feb 3, 2013||Chievo 1 - Juventus 2|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Sep 22, 2012||Juventus 2 - Chievo 0|
|Italy - Serie A (ITA1)||Mar 3, 2012||Juventus 1 - Chievo 1|
|Apr 14, 2014||Udinese 0 - Juventus 2||ITA1|
|Apr 10, 2014||Juventus 2 - Olympique Lyonnais 1||EL|
|Apr 7, 2014||Juventus 2 - Livorno 0||ITA1|
|Apr 3, 2014||Olympique Lyonnais 0 - Juventus 1||EL|
|Mar 30, 2014||SSC Napoli 2 - Juventus 0||ITA1|
|11||Paolo De Ceglie||Defender|
|-||Alessandro Del Piero||Striker|
|21||Nicolas Sebastien Frey||Defender|
After making his mark by coming off the bench to convert the crucial equaliser against the Rossoneri, the former Cagliari man followed it up with a lacklustre performance for Italy against the USA. However, he is the only Juve forward that has consistently scored this term will be aiming to add to his tally of 10 goals this season.
Also on international duty this past week, the United States midfielder helped his side to an historic win over the Azzurri in Genoa and he will be taking on Pirlo and Marchisio again in the centre of the pitch with the hope of limiting their influence and picking up another unlikely victory.
While the Turin giants have often struggled against the smaller teams this season and been held to draws, Chievo's lack of firepower, especially without the suspended Pellissier, is a cause for concern for the visitors and Juventus should be able to take all three points on home soil even if the Flying Donkeys may prove difficult to break down.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed