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Serie A

  • October 20, 2012
  • • 17:00
  • • Juventus Stadium, Torino
  • Referee: A. Damato
  • • Attendance: 41000
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Juventus - Napoli Preview: Expect fireworks in this top-of-the-table Serie A clash

Juventus - Napoli Preview: Expect fireworks in this top-of-the-table Serie A clash

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The Partenopei would love nothing better than to end the Bianconeri's unbeaten record, but Antonio Conte's will be equally motivated on Saturday

  PROBABLE LINEUPS
JUVENTUS

Storari

Bonucci,
Barzagli, Chiellini
L'steiner, Vidal, Pirlo, Marchisio, Asamoah
Giovinco, Matri

NAPOLI
FC Lorient
De Sanctis
Campagnaro, Cannavaro, Gamberini
Maggio, Inler, Behrami, Zuniga
Hamsik
Pandev, Cavani

If there was not enough of an incentive for Napoli to attempt end Juventus' unbeaten record this season already, then perhaps the fact that the last time these two sides met, it ended in controversy with the Azzurri having two men sent off and their coach Walter Mazzarri was dismissed for dissent in a fiery encounter in the Supercoppa Italiana back in August.

And if this 4-2 defeat they suffered did have any effect on the Partenopei, then based on results this season in Serie A, it has only made them more determined to do well as they have started their first seven games undefeated, setting up this top-of-the-table-clash with Juventus.

The Bianconeri, meanwhile, are looking to make it a staggering 47 league games unbeaten, but will have to make do without the services of the ever-reliable Gianluigi Buffon, who has been ruled out after failing to recover from a thigh injury sustained during Italy's victory over Armenia last Friday.

Striker Mirko Vucinic will also sit out the clash after being struck down with flu earlier this week, but Claudio Marchisio has been included in the matchday squad after recovering from a shoulder injury.

The two players who received their matching orders in the last match, Napoli duo Goran Pandev and Juan Zuniga, will be looking to make amends at Juventus Stadium on Saturday with coach Mazzarri having a fully fit squad to choose from.

But all eyes will naturally be on striker Edinson Cavani who has been the most prolific forward in Serie A this year.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Juventus striker Fabio Quagliarella, played for Napoli in 2009-2010 and could strike against his old club on Saturday.
  • The Bianconeri and Napoli have scored the most goals this season - 31 between them - but Azzurri striker Edinson Cavani tops the scoring charts with six strikes.
  • Juventus' recent record over the Partenopei is poor, with only three victories in their last nine.
  • Napoli inflicted Juventus' only defeat last season in Italy beating them 2-0 in the Coppa Italia final.
  • Marek Hamsik (pictured, right) has scored five goals against Juventus; more than against any other club, and has three goals and three assists to his name this season.
  • In the last six meetings between Napoli and Juventus, there have been 24 goals shared between them.

Players to watch

A. Pirlo

Position: Midfielder

Games: 8

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If Napoli let the talented 33-year-old sit and dictate play like he is so accustomed to doing for Antonio Conte's side, then, it could yet well be a long night for the visitors. He has shown critics that, despite heading into his twilight years, he is still capable of turning in a performance for the national side too, the Partenopei would be foolish to ignore the threat of Pirlo.

E. Cavani

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

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Has been the man to watch for the Azzurri this season and already has six goals to his name in Serie A, good control with the ball at his feet and strong in the air, Cavani is arguably the complete centre forward and may well fancy his chances of grabbing a goal or two, in Buffon's absence, for Walter Mazzarri's men.

Editor's Prediction

There are usually plenty of goals when these two sides clash, and although Napoli have perhaps had the edge over their rivals in recent encounters, home advantage may just give the Bianconeri leverage in this one.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Juventus

Napoli

Wins
3
1
1
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Juventus FC JUV
Juventus FC Juventus
Draw
SSC Napoli NAP
SSC Napoli Napoli
72%
18%

Top 3 Predictions

Juventus FC JUV
2 - 0
SSC Napoli NAP
Juventus FC JUV
2 - 1
SSC Napoli NAP
Juventus FC JUV
3 - 1
SSC Napoli NAP

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