Past master Massimiliano Allegri is in line to once again showcase why he is so highly rated when Juventus renew their chase for a domestic double away to Salernitana on Sunday. The record Scudetto winners on Thursday wiped the floor with the Serie A’s basement club 6-1 in a Coppa Italia tie to underline their hunger for silverware after a season in the doldrums. A six time Scudetto winner, Allegri is demonstrating his tactical nous by getting results while breeding young talent.
On Thursday, Kenan Yildiz, 18, Fabio Miretti, 20, Nicolo Fagioli, 22, Samuel Iling Junior, 20 and a pair of 23-year-olds – Andrea Cambiaso and Timothy Weah were responsible for eviscerating Salernitana. The same players are to be given a chance to claim a permanent starting slot as the Old Lady tries to bridge a two point deficit on leaders Inter Milan.
Simone Inzaghi’s Nerrazzuri have a chance to create some breathing space at the summit when they host struggling Hellas Verona in Saturday’s early kick off. Having witnessed his fingers burnt by squad rotation in a 1-2 Coppa Italia cup upset at the hands of Bologna, Inzaghi is expected to go with the tried and tested front pair of 15-goal Capocannonieri lead hunter Lautaro Martinez and Marcus Thuram.
Jose Mourinho should unleash a full throttle approach by deploying a front three of Romelu Lukaku, Paulo Dybala and Andrea Belotti when AS Roma host Gian Piero Gasperini’s Atalanta in the marquee fixture of the weekend. Lukaku and Dybala were on the mark as the Romans fought back from a goal down to torpedo Cremonese 2-1 in a Coppa Italia rubber on Wednesday and book a quarter final date with city rivals Lazio.
Roma’s Iranian forward Sardar Azmoun will be absent as he played his last game before departing for the Asian Cup. With Atalanta’s seven goal Nigerian forward Ademola Lookman also away at the Africa Cup of Nations, Gasperini should turn to Belgian striker Charles de Ketelaere whose two goals were instrumental in Atlanta’s 3-1 Coppa Italia victory over Sassuolo.
Bologna v Genoa
Inter Milan v Hellas Verona,
Frosinone v Monza,
Lecce v Cagliari,
Sassuolo v Fiorentina,
Empoli v AC Milan,
Udinese v Lazio,
Torino v Napoli,
Salernitana v Juventus
AS Roma v Atalanta