Ahead of a tense visit to the Eithad Stadium on Tuesday evening, reigning Serie A champions Juventus look the worse for wear as they were able to scrap their first Serie A point against high-flying Chievo.
Massimiliano Allegri’s men fell behind at the Juventus Stadium when Perparim Hetemaj fired the visitors into an early lead. It seemed as if the Tuscan tactician had the Champions league clash prioritized as Juventus opted for a relatively rotated squad, eventually drawing for Paul Pogba for inspiration with a controversial penalty being rewarded in the 83rd minute after Juan Cuadrado was deemed to have been infringed upon.
We were warned…
This seemed to echo an underlying theme this season that Juventus are sorely missing the experience that lead them to the Champions league final last campaign. Max Allgeri has always been a polarizing figure, mostly for his mercurial approach to tactics – never afraid to switch things up – a man who has paranoia in success and a watchful eye on complacency. He was quick to warn after the 2-1 friendly win at Lechia Gdansk that Juventus will face many more challenges this season after their rivals all strengthened their squads, and it seems as if his sentiment holds true, much to his detriment.
Perhaps the biggest issue was cohesion, which is to be expected given that the Turin giants underwent such far-reaching changes this summer. Both Dybala and Hernanes looked particularly bright individually; but they linked up on very few occasions which is something that must improve over time. This cannot occur if the formations and players are constantly changing. The team looks hasty in attack because they are unable to build possession effectively, a problem unheard of in days gone by with the architect finding his way to New York and Il Guerriero joining the German Giants. One thing is for certain though, Allegri will not allow his team to take this fixture at the Etihad lightly, and perhaps the form book might not be as influential in this fixture.