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Italy - Serie A
September 22, 2013
• Juventus Stadium, Torino
Referee: M. Bergonzi
• Attendance: 38789
C. Tévez 40'
F. Cacciatore 36'
The chance drifts off into the abyss and the full-time whistle blows as Juventus eventually hold on and secure all three points against Verona. I've been Livio Caferoglu and thanks for joining me this afternoon. Goodbye!
90' + 2'
Vidal is almost inconsolable as he concedes a free kick near his side's box following a strong tackle on Gomez. Verona plough almost their entire team into the Juventus area...
Giovinco is the latest player to be pulled up by the referee following a slight trip on his opponent. Juve have less than 90 seconds to weather the Verona storm now!
There'll be three minutes of time added on at Juventus Stadium.
Yellow CardClaudio Marchisio
Yellow CardMarco Donadel
Yellow CardMirko Vučinić
Vucinic is furious as he is pegged back for an alleged foul and struggles to control his temper after booting the ball away. Moments later, Marchisio is the next Juve name in the ref's book for scythering through Romulo.
TWO MORE CHANCES GO BEGGING!!!! When will Juve learn to banish their profligacy? First, Vucinic emerges with the ball in a crowd of Verona shirts but cannot find the composure to find the finish. Not long later, Pogba hits another powerful strike which Rafael gathers.
PENALTY SHOUT? Giovinco almost makes an instant impact off the bench as he finds himself with the ball in the box and crashes into Rafael who immediately protests his innocence. However, it was more a case of the forward forcing through the issue.
Isla almost makes it 3-1 and out after running onto a lofted pass over the top and half-volleying the ball into the side-netting.
Regardless of the outcome in this match, you have to hand it to Verona. Their resillience has been a far cry from Sassuolo's showing against Inter earlier this afternoon, although some of it has to go down as poor finishing on Juve's behalf.
MARCHISIOOOO!!! The midfielder, on his return from injury, thinks he has netted from a corner, but the referee spots an infringement. Soon after, Vucinic finds Tevez free in the box, although the Argentine can't get his feet in order quick enough, as his finish is weak and straight at Rafael.
Juventus are now more than happy to hold onto the ball and slow down the tempo in a bid to kill this game off. Their passing has been extremely crisp in these brief exchanges, and Verona are rapidly running out of ideas as a result.
Llorente goes off the field of play to a warm reception from Juve fans, who express their joy at seeing their new signing make a positive impact in his first major run-out. There'll be more to come from him if he maintains this form for the rest of the season, despite not looking 100 per cent fit.
WHAT A STRIKE!!! Pogba nearly adds to Juventus' tally, and in some style too, as he bends a shot from the edge of the box onto the crossbar, with Rafael barely moving from a standing position!
As the introduction of Marchisio inches ever closer, Tevez wins his team a free kick and Pirlo almost finds the back of the net with a trademark curler, coming in from the left-hand side!
Interesting to see the role Gomez has taken up since coming on - he's clearly been instructed to watch Pirlo's every move! Meanwhile, Llorente has a snapshot at goal but Rafael makes an easy save.
OH TEVEZ!!! In comparison to some of his team-mates, the former Manchester City ace has been on another wavelength. He twists and turns around a series of Verona shirts but is blocked as he prepares to pull the trigger. Truly a delight to watch!
Pogba has seen lots of the ball this afternoon but has been rather clumsy in possession at times, while his shooting has been off-colour. Again, in two good positions, he wastes shooting opportunities - much to Rafael's relief.
BONUCCI TO THE RESCUE!!! Romulo does fantastically well to skip past his man on the right and cut back a cross for Cacia, who confidently chests down, but the Italy international is there in the nick of time to stab the ball away after a poor misjudgment of the situation by Isla!
Asamoah lets fly from some way out but cannot direct his attempt on target. The Ghanaian seems to have settled into a lull recently and needs to regain his combative spirit again!
The game is currently being played in the Gialloblu half of the pitch, as Isla sends in a deep cross which Vidal can't get anywhere near due to the presence of three opposition defenders.
Yellow CardAngelo Ogbonna
Tevez teases the visitors as he threatens in and around the D, and he eventually passes to Pogba who is immediately shut down. Verona try to move forward, albeit much slower than before, and Ogbonna is booked for shoving Cacia to the ground.
Pogba wins his side a throw deep in the Verona half, yet the attack breaks down when Pirlo loses the ball on the edge of the box.
And we're back out for the second half! Will Verona take more risks, or is it Juve's game to lose? Stay with me to find out...
And on that note, we go in for the interval! Join us again in 15 minutes when the second half resumes.
45' + 3'
45' + 3'
45' + 3'
BENVENUTO A SERIE A, FERNANDO LLORENTE!!!! The Spaniard marks his full Juventus bow in competitive action with a colossal header after meeting a right-wing cross and leaving Cacciatore to pick up the pieces. What a way to silence the doubters!!
45' + 1'
WAS IT A GOAL??? Tevez is looking as explosive as ever, and he rifles an unstoppable drive on target, which beats Rafael yet bounces off both posts! It looks like it didn't cross the line on second glance.
Yet more wonderful defending from Barzagli, as Verona again counter at the speed of light. However, Romulo's cross is superbly intercepted by the defender, and he clears the remaining danger by swiftly robbing Cacia, who tries to take his man on, of the ball.
Yellow CardKwadwo Asamoah
NEARLY TWO!!! Juventus win a corner which is driven into the middle of Verona's box, and Rafael does incredibly well to go down and parry away Pogba's header.
JUVE EQUALISE!!!!!!!!!! It's that boy Tevez, as Bianchetti is hopelessly left ball-watching while the Argentine grabs a deserved goal, instinctively reading a through ball before smashing an effort into the top-left corner of Rafael's net. Game on!
Juventus are stepping up their attempts to force a quick response here, but the Verona defence, which has coped admirably, continue to peg them back.
AGAINST THE RUN OF PLAY BUT THEY ALL COUNT!!!! A questionable celebration but still, it's Cacciatore's chance to bask in the limelight! The defender manages to make contact with a flick-on from a corner, and the Juventus backline are left dumbfounded!
It seems all the action has left Pirlo behind so far. The Veronese have man-marked the playmaker every time the ball is in his vicinity, but it has arguably allowed Juventus to adopt a more adventurous style.
OOOOOHHHHHH!!! The first real signs of a little-and-large partnership between Llorente and Tevez are shown as the Spaniard displays his strength to beat his marker, turn and lay off his strike partner with a delicate through ball. Unfortunately for Juve and the No. 10, his side-footed finish is straight at Rafael!
Vidal has his first real bite of the cherry after a fairly quiet opening to the match by seeing a low shot take a deflection for a corner. However, the resulting corner is wasted.
DESPERATELY UNLUCKY... !!! Juve lose the ball high up the pitch and Verona instantly break away, starting and ending with Hallfredsson. A great pass from Romulo finds Cacia in the box, with his back to goal, but Barzagli gets back just in time to slide the ball away, and the Icelandic's strike floats into the orbit.
Tevez is beginning to play a more prominent role in this encounter, as he shows real strength to uphold his marker and power an attempt just over from a tight angle in the Verona box.
Great football from Juve! Tevez is this time the architect as his flick causes all sorts of panic in the area, yet Pogba cannot connect with the Argentine's genius properly! Asamoah tries to rehash the chance, but his chipped through pass rolls off for a goal kick.
Bonucci might aswell be playing as a No. 10 judging by his constant deployment in the Verona half! Again he sees another speculative effort fly high and wide.
Yet more fine interchanges on the edge of the Verona box results in Llorente catching the ball under his feet as he readies himself for a strike on target, before Pogba aims straight at Rafael.
VIDAAAAAALLLLLLL!! Ogbonna and Asamoah string together a series of passes in the Verona half, and a cross is eventually sent into the box, which the Chilean heads straight at Rafael!
Rafael is all over the place with his positioning, and not for the first time this afternoon. The goalkeeper jumps in the air to punch away a corner but collides with Llorente and two of his defenders. Somehow, his side are awarded a free kick and the Brazilian receives treatment!
Juventus take a quick free-kick on the right-hand side, and Isla - probably by fluke - almost lobs Rafael with a cross-cum-shot!
GREAT CHANCE FOR VERONA!!! A wonderful floated pass drops over Bonucci and to the foot of Cacia, but while the striker can initially shift past his opponent in the box, the ex-Bari man makes a crucial sliding intervention.
Rafael looks worse for wear here as Bonucci takes on Rafael one-on-one, but Moras follows him all the way to the goal and eventually clashes with the shot-stopper.
OOOOH! Tevez is found on the edge of the area and curls a powerful effort just over. Verona surely can't contain much more pressure without breaking can they?
Juve are really pushing their defenders forward, and the result means Verona are being forced more and more back. It's Ogbonna's turn to find himself near the visitors' box unopposed, but Bonucci, who takes over his centre-back partner, can only cross the ball off the field of play.
The early Juventus onslaught continues with Pogba smashing a swerving drive just wide of Rafael's goal.
Barzagli looks to follow in Bonucci's footsteps by making a straight run forward too, but Moras stops the consequent pass and is pulled to the ground by Llorente.
Verona break back quickly as Donati is felled and wins a free kick for his team. Hallfredsson, however, is well marshalled by Isla and the ball returns to Juventus.
Bonucci marauds forward and doesn't take long to test Rafael with a powerful strike from some way out that must be tipped over the bar by the Brazilian goalkeeper.
We're under way at Juventus Stadium, with Vidal already giving Hallfredsson a taste of his own medicine, despite the ball barely being kicked.
Plenty of familar faces in the Verona line-up too - including veteran left-back Alessandro Agostini, journeyman midfielder Massimo Donati, but no Luca Toni sadly.
Meanwhile for Verona, their return to the Serie A spotlight has been similarly impressive. Struggling both on and off the pitch since their relegation from the top flight in 2002, two wins in three, including an shock 2-1 victory over AC Milan, has certainly boosted the early-season spirits of Andrea Mandorlini's side.
Nonetheless, it has been a positive-enough start to the new campaign for the reigning Italian champions - enough not to let it be overshadowed by the Llorente saga. Unbeaten in five matches, they won their first three on the bounce, yet have drawn their last two.
Antonio Conte came under scrutiny this week for his handling of new signing Fernando Llorente, who has so far been limited to just a single competitive appearance in Bianconeri colours. However, he has kept to his pre-match promise by handing the striker a starting berth alongside fellow summer arrival Carlos Tevez.
And in the away corner, a very defensive-minded Gialloblu: Rafael; Bianchetti, Moras, Gonzalez, Cacciatore, Agostini; Romulo, Jorginho, Donati, Hallfredsson; Cacia.
First up, we have the hosts, lining up in their usual 3-5-2 formation: Storari; Ogbonna, Barzagli, Bonucci; Isla, Pogba, Pirlo, Vidal, Asamoah; Llorente, Tevez.
Hello and welcome to LIVE commentary of the Serie A clash between Juventus and Verona! I'm Livio Caferoglu and I'll be guiding you through all the action as it happens in Turin this afternoon. Team news is on its way!
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