Last season when Juventus jumped into the Coppa Italia fray, it just so happened to be against a Hellas Verona squad that ended up having all kinds of trouble with what ended up being a 'B' squad kind of lineup. The final score read 6-1, with Juve legend Sebastian Giovinco netting a brace in one of his appearances for the club.
I feel safe in saying this Coppa Italia opener is going to be a little different.
Six weeks after the first Derby della Mole of the season, we've gotten a bonus one thrown onto the schedule. This one is at the same place as the last one, with a little different kind of circumstances — Juventus is looking to defend its 10th Coppa Italia trophy in club history, not trying to get back into the top half of the table like the last time around.
We're expecting some kind of squad rotation because that's what happens in the Coppa. Do we know how much? Nah, not really, because Max Allegri has channeled his inner Austin Powers and treated his pre-match press conference as time to be an international man of mystery. But the fact that it's the Coppa Italia and the fact that most of the squad is healthy means that there could very well be some overhaul for the midweek encounter against the other football club in Turin.
So let's hope that no matter who plays makes it a little easier on themselves compared to the first Derby della Mole of the season. There's only so much a guy's — or gal's — heart rate can take with so many last-minute goals happening every time Juventus and Torino play one another. And you know for a fact that Toro would love to end Juve's run in the Coppa Italia right as it's getting started. A little payback is never a bad thing for the team that loses the first matchup.
You see that young man in the picture above? Yeah, rumor has it he's pretty good. Oh, and he's about to be playing today against Torino today.
Juventus XI (3-5-2): Neto; Daniele Rugani, Leonardo Bonucci, Giorgio Chiellini; Stephan Lichtsteiner, Sami Khedira, Claudio Marchisio, Paul Pogba, Alex Sandro; Simone Zaza, Álvaro Morata
Juventus bench: Gianluigi Buffon, Rubinho, Martin Caceres, Andrea Barzagli, Patrice Evra, Simone Padoin, Stefano Sturaro, Hernanes, Juan Cuadrado, Mario Mandzukic, Paulo Dybala
Torino XI (3-5-2): Salvador Ichazo; Cesere Bovo, Kamil Glik, Emiliano Moretti; Bruno Peres, Afriyie Acquah, Alessandro Gazzi, Daniele Baselli, Cristian Molinaro; Andrea Belotti, Maxi Lopez
How to watch
TV: RAI Uno (Italy)
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