Welcome to TheOffside's liveblog of the Palermo-Juventus game, week 32. Palermo have lost 4-in-a-row and Juve is in relative good form. Looks like Nocerino is filling in for Zanetti in the center.
Morganti is our ref today. Make your own conclusion.
2'- Nedved just is getting beat up this season, it seems. High challenge knocks him over.
4'- Juve is just tapping the ball around, getting into a passing rhythm. As the commentator mentions, there's quite a bit of Juventus support in the Sicilian crowd. We're loved everywhere.
5' Amauri gets the ball near the front of the box but can't do anything with it.
7'- Sissoko makes a good interception and passes the ball to Trez but just a bit too far. Jankovic goes on a good run down our left flank and wins a corner which is cleared well. Barzagli flattens Del Piero and is carded.
9'- Little nervy, Balzaretti goes on a great run down our right flank. (why'd we get rid of him?) Buffon comes out but Chiellini misses
10'- Son of a bitch. Amauri scores on a hell of a shot, a great curling shot from the edge of the box to the top-right corner. Palermo is putting some serious pressure on counter-attacks.
13'- Molinaro runs up the left flank and finds Del Piero in the middle but his shot is blocked by a billion men in pink.
14'- Trez takes a great volley on a cross from Camoranesi, but is also blocked by a defender.
15'- Classic dive by a Palermo midfielder pisses off Camoranesi and he gets booked with a yellow for dissent. Resulting free kick goes flying over the bar.
18'- Guana and Nedved get into a nasty tackle, both clunking their heads together. Iaquinta warming up as a sub...the last thing we need right now is less defending on our left flank.
22'- Iaquinta is coming on for Nedved as both players are stretchered off. 4-3-3, boys. Tedesco comes on for Guana.
25'- Del Piero hammers a ball in but it rebounds after some random pink bald guys head. Who knows, who cares.
29'- Camoranesi tries a shot from distance, pretty easy for Fontana to pick up.
32'- Juve is passing around, trying to get back in their rhythm after dive after dive from Palermo keeps creating stoppages. This one is from Jankovic bitching after a super-tackle from Sissoko. Maybe that's Palermo's strategy, if they flop on the ground enough, they can derail Juve's rhythm.
35'- Great header from Chiellini on a corner, just a bit over.
37'- 3rd corner in 3 minutes. We're starting to add pressure, but nothing I've seen thus far that has been too dangerous.
38'- Wrong offside call on Del Piero, but he was wide and it would have been hard for him to do anything anyways.
40'- A deflected cross from Molinaro goes into the box, but nothing comes of it, Iaquinta misjudges it by a bit.
44'- It's been a pretty heated half. Balzaretti is playing pretty well. Someone remind me why we dumped him for Molinaro.
45-' 5 minutes of stoppage time, thanks to repeated dives from Palermo players taking up time. Blast from Iaquinta from outside comfortably saved by the 2nd oldest keeper in Serie A. Yet another dive from a Palermo player after a good tackle from Grygera. 2-0 Palermo. Thanks to wonderful time-wasting from flopping Palermo players constantly on the ground, Amauri gets a header in the very late part of the 2nd half. Looks like another shitty day for Juve. Where is the team from Inter-Juve?
HT- Shitty first half, obviously, but it's been a bit since we've played lethargically, so I guess this is the time to get it out. Palermo is quite obviously capitalizing on chances, and we are not. 4-3-3 is too weak in the midfield considering Palermo is working down the wings. (Why Nocerino and Molinaro when we have Zebina and Salihamidzic...) Hopefully we can come back, score 5-straight like last October. I still do not want Amauri on our team. Two decent goals does not mean you deserve a transfer to the greatest squad in the world. Rosaneri, please keep him. Or sell him to Chelski or something.
Tiago on for Nocerino. (THANK GOD) Salihamidzic on for Grygera. (odd) Bout time, Tiago may not play well at Juve but he definitely plays better than Nocerino. Tony has potential, no doubt. But loan him out next year, cause he's killing me this season.
46'- Nasty collision just like the Guana-Nedved one in midfield, Tiago bloodied a good amount.
49'- Decent effort by Iaquinta/Trez, but smothered again.
51'- GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL DEL PIEROOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Sissoko takes a great shot, then gets flattened, and Del Piero fakes Palermo out and slots it back in, terrific. We're back in it. Oh yeah, did I mention he is the all-time caps leader for Juve now, ahead of Scirea?
54'- We're playing a bit better than before, no doubt, but still not pleased.
57'- Good tackle from Tiago, good to see him actually physically getting involved. Pretty easy to spot him with the giant white headband.
58'- Hell of a blast from Legrottaglie, just off. Random, but a very nice effort.
60'- A good effort from a Palermo player, but just off. Tiago plays in a good ball to Trez, but the volley wasn't good. Good substitutions by Ranieri overall.
61'- Palermo subs Simplicio for Bresciano. Not a bad game from Simplicio, he seemed irritated to be taken off but it was a tactical substitution and probably a good call from whoever is coaching Palermo these days.
63'- Amauri goes down in the box, didn't look like anything other than two guys running into each other. Amauri was certainly hunting for a penalty there, but what would you expect from a team that successfully got 5minutes of extra time in the 1st half?
65'- Molinaro makes a good run. He's been playing better in the 2nd half, but he's still got a way before he gets my full seal of approval, given his overall season.
67'- Palermo player down, but actually for a legit reason. He was going for a tackle and got hit by Molinaro, I'm not sure if he was hit in the shoulder or the foot. Some pushing and shoving in the box between Rinauldo and Trez before a corner.
70'- GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL DEL PIERO AGAIN!!!!!!!!! A brace on the night of one of his greatest achievements for Juve, a good header from Trez and a fantastic left-footed smash from Del Piero.
Never give up, that's the Juve mantra, isn't it? We can win this one. You can hear the Juve fans in the crowd out-cheering their Palermo counterparts.
73'- This game is heated as hell, and thoroughly entertaining. When we went 2-0 down, I thought of the Parma game where we came back from 2-0 to make it 2-2, before the referee (I think it was even Morganti) disallowed the winning header from Iaquinta for no reason. Could we get robbed again?
76'- Tiago makes a good pass to Del Piero, who can't do much with it and gets swarmed by a few Palermo defenders and loses the ball. Hattrick for him on one of his greatest nights?
77'- Buffon comes up to the halfline to kick the ball back on a corner.
78'- We are heaping on the pressure. Let's get a goal.
80'- Fantastic free kick from Del Piero but gets denied by the crossbar, and Trez fires in the rebound but Fontana makes a fantastic save to deny us the goal.
81'- Zaccardo (remember Own-goal Zaccardo?) comes on to try and shore up the Palermo defense that is just taking a beating.
83'- Camoranesi makes a great dummy and Trezeguet fires it in but missed just by a bit...the winning goal is coming, let's just hope it comes on our side.
85'- Sissoko has been a beast today. I take everything back that I said about him. Iaquinta puts a header, may have been offside, but it was over anyways.
87'- Even if we end up losing this, we played a good 2nd half.
88'- I shouldn't have said that. One hell of a blast from Cassani, nothing Buffon could do about it, means it's 3-2 and we're heading towards another defeat. Looks like Buffon's view was blocked by a Juve defender. Hell of a blast anyways.
90'- We lose unluckily again to a southern Italian team, but we can't win them all. (Napoli, Reggina, Palermo) A very slow first half was probably the reason we lost, we were constantly attacking the 2nd half just like Juventus-Napoli. Hopefully we can respond and crush a Kaladze/Nesta/Oddo-less Milan next week. Disappointing loss, but shit happens. FORZA JUVE!
Brief thoughts afterwards-
#1- We were unlucky as hell to lose. The numbers don't lie. But of course if statistics determined football, we wouldn't bother to play.
#2- No Amauri. Not for Juve, not for Italy. I don't want him at Juve and seeing Chiellini and Molinaro gabbing it up with him pissed me off. He's the enemy until he's in bianconero, and as far as I'm concerned, that's forever. And he doesn't deserve to play for Italy. We're not a 2nd-choice team. And yes, before any Palermo fan attacks me, I was not too keen on Camoranesi joining the Azzurri, but at least he's of Italian descent.
#3- Palermo is still a shitty team with no history. They've been challenging for a Champion's League spot the last few years, and people have seem to forgotten before being promoted, the last time they were in Serie A was 1973...and they have been in Serie C2.
#4- Sissoko is becoming world class again.
#5- Let's rebound and take it to Milan next week. FORZA JUVE.