It's been a little while since Juventus played in front of their home fans in Turin. And no, I'm not talking about when the Italian national team played at Juventus Stadium over the international break. I'm talking about Juventus at home and the Juventus Stadium crowd being decked out in black and white from the first row of seats to the last.
For the first time in the month of September, Juventus will be the home team. Sure, they've only had two other matches this month, but the fact remains the same — it's nice to be home for once.
With all the talk about Fernando Llorente, the disappointment and/or rage following the 1-1 draw to FC Copenhagen earlier in the week, Antonio Conte has had to listen to the press ramble on about the state of his team. And in response to all of the mumbo-jumbo being said in the press, Conte had this to say during his pre-match press conference:
"These are the same criticisms we had last year. I remember people saying that we were going well in the championship but stuttering in Europe. And then when we beat Chelsea 3-0, we were suddenly kings of Europe and ready to win the Champions League.
"This is the world we live in. But we're perfectly calm, we've got an added year's experience and need to remain balanced in handling the pressures that we face, using them as motivation to do well."
Truer words have never been spoken. Okay, maybe never, but something like that. The fact remains the same: If Juventus is at home, playing against a team it is greatly superior to, and needs to get going again after a disappointing midweek showing in Denmark. If that means shaking up the lineup and starting somebody like Llorente, then so be it. But either way, three points is the objective — as it should be with every game Juventus plays.
Good talk. Let's get the train rolling again. Let us wait patiently for Conte to do his rotating of the squad. And let us predictably discuss it the minute the lineups are announced.
UPDATE: LINEUPS! AND LLORENTE!
Juventus XI (3-5-2): Storari; Barzagli, Bonucci, Ogbonna; Isla, Vidal, Pirlo, Pogba, Asamoah; Tevez, Llorente
Hellas Verona (4-5-1): Rafael; Gonzalez, Moras, Bianchetti; Cacciatore, Romulo, Donati, Hallfredsson, Agostini; Jorginho; Cacia