Juventus is developing a pattern. It could be viewed as good, it could be viewed as bad. Regardless, said pattern was on full display at Juventus Stadium during Sunday's lunchtime throwdown between Juve and Fiorentina.
Yeah, it was one of those first halves. But it was also one of those second halves.
The difference between the Juventus of the first 45 minutes compared to the Juventus of the second 45 minutes was as noticeable as the awesomeness of Kwadwo Asamoah's stunning goal. Juventus' shots towards the Fiorentina goal were firing high and wide in the first half, but the main thing was that they were obviously creating plenty of opportunities. The second half, though, it was the Juve we've seen after the break the last few games. Fiorentina manager Vincenzo Montella clearly changed his team's approach, and it showed.
It was almost as if the teams switched roles at halftime without telling anybody. But sometimes you just need a shot to clang off the upright. When you're good, you get luck going your way, I guess.
Alas, three points is three points and that's exactly what Juventus got against Fiorentina. Home turf defended again. The revenge tour was completed. Preparations for a second straight home match against Fiorentina on Thursday will start right about...now.
Random thoughts and observations
- Kwadwo Asamoah is making me rethink the notion that Juventus need to sign a new starting left wingback this summer. He has been absolutely fantastic the last couple of months. It's the exact opposite of how he played during the second half of the season last year. How much that had to do with the busyness of the Africa Cup of Nations I don't really know, but it's pretty easy to see that Asamoah hasn't been this good form-wise since his first couple of months in a Juventus jersey. And that's never going to be a bad thing.
Oh, one more thing: HE SCORED A GOAL WITH HIS RIGHT FOOT.
- Juventus' home form this season: WWWWWWWWWWWWWW
Pretty. 14 games at Juventus Stadium, 14 wins.
- This stat will make you think a little bit.
49.1% - Fiorentina kept 49.1% of ball possession vs Juventus: their lowest percentage this season. Exertion. #JuventusFiorentina— OptaPaolo (@OptaPaolo) March 9, 2014
If that's Fiorentina's lowest possession percentage this season, holy cow. I don't know what's more impressive in what comes out of that number — that Juventus kept Fiorentina to that, or that 49.1 percent possession became the lowest of the season. Impressive in both aspects, really.
- Leonardo Bonucci getting some much deserved rest gave Angelo Ogbonna to play in the center of the Juve defense for the first time in a little while. And he definitely took advantage of it. There seems to be a nervy moment or two whenever Ogbonna plays, but not Sunday afternoon. He was as reliable as he's ever been this season. He didn't play on the ball as much as Bonucci does because Juve were really putting an emphasis on attacking down the wings, but Ogbonna was one of his team's best players on Sunday.
- Claudio Marchisio with another unspectacular yet solid game as the fill-in for Andrea Pirlo as Juve's regista. He's done one hell of a job adapting to his new role and it just seems that he's getting better and better at it as he becomes more comfortable in it.
- Gigi Buffon had one big save to make at it wasn't technically a save. Don't lie if your heart rate doubled when you saw San Gigi rushing off his line and out of the box to clear the ball. I know mine did.
- Unbeaten run currently stands at 19 games and counting. Juventus' lead atop Serie A currently stands at 14 points going into the afternoon and evening matches (you would like to think Roma vs. Napoli should be rather interesting). That's all I got for now. The sun is about to rise here in California and I'm going back to bed.
- Game Time Thread: Juventus vs. Fiorentina
- Juventus vs. Fiorentina Preview: Round 27 — Everything comes full circle
- Paul Pogba exit rumors are still plentiful, still pretty annoying
- Beppe Marotta says Antonio Conte's contract renewal talks will come in due time
- VOTD: Gianluigi Buffon's Man of the Match performance against AC Milan