Within a three-minute span on Saturday evening, we were shown the amazing and the not-so-amazing side of being a goalkeeper. And in a way, we were also shown two very distinct microcosms of the respective seasons for both Juventus and Inter Milan at the same time.
On one end you had Juventus, the four-time league champions playing without half of their normal starting lineup simply because of the game they're playing after the trip to the San Siro. At the other end, you have a team with a manager on his second tour of duty and players brought in during the winter transfer window that were supposed to improve the squad — but haven't really done a thing in terms of vastly improving Inter's fortunes.
In short: Álvaro Morata's goal — with a big-time assist to Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic — gave Juventus the lead, but it was Marco Storari's insanely good double save that helped the scoreline stay that way and have Juventus get three more points.
No, it wasn't, Claudio. In fact, to be completely honest with everybody, it was far from it. Juve were basically going through the motions in the first half. You could say it was fatigue, or maybe it was something else. But no matter what angle you look at it from, Juventus' game was far from the one we saw a few days ago in Madrid. They fell behind early and didn't look all too interested in doing much.
Yet, there they were, celebrating another win thanks to Morata's eighth goal of the season. It's hard to really say that Juventus played well because they didn't. They didn't look sharp as a collective whole, got dominated in possession by Inter by almost a 2-to-1 margin, and just looked kinda meh for the most part.
They got the goal from Morata. The double-save from Storari. Just like that, Juventus claimed another Derby d'Italia win. Not routine by any means, but it worked, so who am I to object to Juventus beating Inter?
And when you make a game-changing pair of saves like that, I think you're allowed to enjoy it.
Random thoughts and observations
- LOL INTER.
(But isn't that just a given at this point?)
- Go back and watch Morata's goal and the couple seconds after it crosses the goal line. Not even Álvaro could believe what had just taken place. He surely thought — like pretty much everybody else —that the shot on goal would be an easy save and that would be that. I guess Handanovic had other ideas.
- Morata could have easily had a hat trick against Inter of any of his scoring chances prior to his goal were actually put on target. He was one of the Juventus players who truly looked up for the game despite playing just a few days before against Real Madrid. He's now tied with Paul Pogba for second on the team with eight Serie A goals and now only trails Carlos Tévez with 14 goals in all competitions. I'd say he's been a pretty good investment.
On top of everything he's done as of late both in Serie A and in the Champions League, he also had easily one of the best goal celebrations of the season. Yeah, deal with it.
Morata's "deal with it" celebration pic.twitter.com/hD7K9Sx06l— hash (@hashim0307) May 16, 2015
- With so many regulars out because Max Allegri started to rest them, Claudio Marchisio got to wear the captain's armband once again. He also got to take a penalty. He aced that test, scoring his third goal in 11 career appearances against Inter.
- It had to be Mauro Icardi scoring Inter's goal, didn't it? Of course it did. Because that's what seems to be written into the bylaws. Or something like that.
- Is it just me, or did Inter look completely gassed in the final 15-20 minutes? That's something I might have expected from Juventus considering some players were coming off the Real Madrid game, and others didn't have a ton of minutes under the legs as of late. I guess that's totally wrong. I'll just go back to watching that gif of Morata and his newfound sunglasses now.
- Considering how well he has played in recent games, it was a pretty quiet night for Stefano Sturaro. I think he's allowed one or two of those after the play he made against James Rodriguez a few weeks ago.
- It's an incredibly small sample size, but Romulo has been a better right back than midfielder. It's going to be interesting to see what Juventus do with his contract this summer when you factor in how little he has played.
- Coppa Italia final up next. Let some of the regulars returns. And Juventus make it a domestic double. It'd be awfully nice to keep all of this momentum going.