Juventus host Inter Milan at the Allianz Stadium in a top-of-the-table showdown on Sunday in what promises to be a thrilling Derby D’Italia
The Old Lady briefly moved top of the Serie A table after a 2-1 victory over 18th-place Cagliari at the Allianz Stadium before the international break. Second-half goals from the defensive pair of Gleison Bremer and Daniele Rugani secured all three points for the Bianconeri.
It was quite an underwhelming first half as neither side was able to fashion out a clear chance that led to a shot on target. However, Juventus kick-started the second half guns blazing as Federico Chiesa had an early strike parried away by Cagliari’s goalkeeper, Simone Scuffet.
Not too long after, Filip Kostic had his shot saved from a tight angle as Cagliari’s keeper once again kept his team in the game.
It wasn’t to be for long as Bremer directed a towering header from Kostic’s cross into the back of the net at the hour mark. Ten minutes later, Rugani chested the ball into the net from a rebound after hitting the bar.
Juventus hope for a seventh consecutive clean sheet was brought to a halt after Alberto Dossena pulled one back for Claudio Ranieri’s men in the 75th minute, making it the third defender to score in the match from both teams. It was the first goal Juventus conceded since September 23 in the 4-2 loss to Sassuolo.
Next up for the Bianconeri is a stern test, one that would prove decisive in the Scudetto chase as Inter travel to Turin after ending Juventus’ brief stay at the top of the League with a 2-0 victory over Frosinone. Those with Juventus tickets will be desperate for a win over their rivals to put them in pole position for the title.
Federico Dimarco scored an outrageous goal from 50 yards out with a lob after spotting Stefano Turati off his line. Hakan Calhanoglu converted a penalty to double Inter’s lead and seal all three points after Ilario Monterisi tripped Marcus Thuram in the second half.
Earlier on in the match, the Nerazzuri made an explosive start as Calhanoglu’s corner narrowly evaded Thuram’s header by a whisker.
Thuram had another chance, shooting from a tight angle but Turati was quick to keep the shot out. Turati was the busiest of the goalkeepers as he acrobatically tipped Lautaro Martinez’s strike that was reaching for the far post over the crossbar
Frosinone grew into the game and nearly halved the deficit after Walid Cheddira’s shot struck the post. Inter thought they had the game all wrapped up after Martinez sent his effort wide from close range in stoppage time.
The victory over Frosinone propelled Inter back to the summit of Serie A with 31 points, two clear of Juventus who are in second place. The Nerazzuri will then travel to Turin to face The Bianconeri in a top-of-the-table clash on Sunday, as victory for either team will take them to the top of the league.
Juventus v Inter Milan – match details
- Date: 26 November 2023
- Location: Turin, Italy
- Venue: Allianz Stadium
- Kick-off time: 19:45 UTC, 20:45 CET, 14:45 ET /11:45 PT
- Referee: Marco Guida.
- Assistant referee: Filippo Meli, Stefano Alassio.
- Fourth official: Davide Massa.
- VAR: Massimiliano Irrati
What the managers said
After the victory over Frosinone before the international break, Simone Inzaghi gave his analysis about the game as well as the upcoming Derby D’Italia. He said: “We played these six games from break to break in the best possible way, playing well. We must continue to work as we have been doing since July 13th, I have a great group that must continue to improve”.
“As for recoveries, we know that for Pavard it will take time, for Cuadrado we have to see how he reacts, while Asllani will return after the break. We will have to recover the players for rotations.”
“The concentration and the desire to be together. It’s a beautiful group that accepts my choices and those of the staff with serenity. They are good together, they must continue as they have done in these last six games. We have seen other teams lose points before the break, today we found a Frosinone team who created difficulties for us.”
When quizzed on whether the Derby D’Italia would be a title decider, he responded thus:
“No, it’s only the thirteenth match, a third of the championship: it will be an important match because it represents a lot for the environment. After the break, the top six in the standings will meet.”
“We are first, Juve are second, we are the two teams that have done best up to this point. It’s too early to make any assessments, it’s still a very long way off.”
When asked about contradictions between Massimiliano Allegri favoring Inter as favorites for the scudetto and Beppe Marotta picking Juventus as favorites, he responded by saying:
“I listen to what they say, Marotta has more experience than everyone. I wish my team to play as many matches as possible, then time and the pitch will tell who will go further. We know that there will be difficulties for everyone, we will have to be good together in these situations.”
After the victory over Cagliari, Juventus coach, Allegri stated: “Inter are favourites for the Scudetto with AC Milan and Napoli a little behind,”
“They are a team that has been built for years to win the championship and this year they are the number one favorite. Today’s victory(against Cagliari) is useful for us to stretch the lead over those behind.
Juventus coach, Massimiliano Allegri is set to evaluate the fitness of Manuel Locatelli and Fabio Miretti following their international duties with Italy, recognizing their significant contributions to Juventus’ current campaign. The potential absence of these key players leaves a noticeable void in the Old Lady’s midfield.
Inter Milan’s coach, Simone Inzaghi faces the challenge of missing Alessandro Bastoni in the upcoming fixture, with the defender ruled out and also set to miss the Champions League match against Benfica.
Juan Cuadrado, recovering from tendinitis, could make a potential return to the Nerazzurri squad, providing a valuable option from the bench. While not expected to replace Denzel Dumfries in the starting lineup, Cuadrado could still pose a threat to his former club, adding his name to the interconnected history of players who have represented both teams over the years.
Predicted starting line-up
Juventus predicted starting line-up: Szczensy; Gatti, Bremer, Rugani; Cambiaso, Mckennie, Caviglia, Rabiot, Kostic; Chiesa, Kean
Inter Milan predicted starting line-up: Sommer; Darmian, De Vrij, Acerbi; Dumfries, Mkhitaryan, Calhanoglu, Barella, Dimarco; Thuram, Martinez
Inter Milan have showcased an impressive run in Serie A, securing their position at the top by dropping only four points this season. Unbeaten since Serie A Matchday 6 and victorious in their last six games, the Nerazzurri enter the Derby d’Italia as formidable contenders.
Despite initial concerns and challenges at the beginning of the 2023/24 Serie A campaign, Juventus have found stability under Massimiliano Allegri. While not known for entertaining football, they hold a deserving second place, maintaining a mere two-point gap behind the league leaders.
The upcoming clash between Inter and Juventus is poised to be fiercely contested, with both sets of fans and coaches anticipating nothing less than a victory, fueled by the intense rivalry between the two teams.
Regardless of the outcome, Inter and Juventus will remain the top two teams in the Serie A table at the end of the weekend.
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