For the second and final time in the 2014-15 season, it's Derby d'Italia day. In many years, this would have been accompanied by days of media attention and plenty of hype. There would have been features written, columns penned and plenty of things for all of us to consume in the build-up to the last derby.
This time around ... not so much.
Most of Max Allegri's press conference was — understandably, without a doubt — dominated by talk of Juventus playing in the Champions League final in two weeks time. There were questions about Inter, sure, but not to the extent that many other Juve-Inter matchups would be like. That's the nature of Juventus' and Inter' seasons being completely different in so many ways.
Juventus aren't at full strength entering today's trip to the San Siro. But that's not because half the midfield and a few defenders are injured like what seemed to be so constant during much of the 2014-15 season. No, this is by choice.
Gianluigi Buffon? At home resting.
Carlos Tévez? At home resting.
Andrea Pirlo, Arturo Vidal and Patrice Evra? They're all resting at home, too.
The beauty of clinching the league a few weeks back and having games higher on the priority list is that Allegri can do this and not even question his decision. Would a Derby d'Italia win be nice? Sure it would. But there's the Coppa Italia in a couple days, as well as the Champions League final on the horizon. Those are Juve's priorities right now, not trying to beat up on Inter with a full-strength squad.
Although, seeing somebody in a Juventus jersey like, say, Claudio Marchisio find the back of the net and add to his goal tally against Inter would be pretty nice to see.
So I guess there's still something that should be able to get us fired up for today's game against Inter. Or maybe the fact at putting a dent in Inter's late-season attempt to sneak into a Europa League spot would be fun, too.
Okay, so there's definitely something to play for — even if Juventus' starting lineup isn't going to look much like the one that just qualified for the Champions League final. (Saying that Juve's in the Champions League final won't get old, by the way.)
Starting lineups for both Juventus and
those completely stupid people in the blue and black jerseys Inter Milan will be posted RIGHT HERE when they become available. Max Allegri said there will be squad rotation, so let there be squad rotation! And maybe even an appearance by Kwadwo Asamoah. My Twitter has been so devoid of #BOH for months now. I think that needs to be changed ASAP.
UPDATE: LINEUPS ARE IN!
Juventus XI (4-3-1-2): Storari; Lichtsteiner, Barzagli, Bonucci, Padoin; Romulo, Marchisio, Sturaro; Pereyra; Matri, Morata
Juventus bench: Moedim, Audero, Ogbonna, Pogba, Pepe, Coman, Llorente, De Ceglie, Asamoah, Marrone
Inter XI (4-3-1-2): Handanovic; D'Ambrosio, Ranocchia, Vidic, Jesus; Brozovic, Medel, Kovacic; Shaqiri; Palacio, Icardi
Inter bench: Carrizo, Andreolli, Podolski, Kuzmanovic, Obi, Santon, Felipe, Gnoukouri, Puscas, Nagatomo, Dimarco, Bonazzoli