Max Allegri said there would be no celebrations. Beppe Marotta said there would be no celebrations. And they were true their word ... kinda. There were hugs, there was some bottles of champagne in the dressing room, and Max even went flying for a second after the final whistle sounded. So in a way, yes, Juventus did do a little bit of celebrating when the final whistle blew and the 1-0 win over Sampdoria was all done and dusted.
It was, of course, the day that so many had expected for weeks now. Juventus didn't need to win on Saturday, but they got more than that. Arturo Vidal — who had a Man of the Match-kind of performance against Sampdoria — got the eventual game-winning goal, Stephan Lichtsteiner got the assist, and because of it, Juventus got their fourth straight Scudetto.
This was the culmination — at least domestically; there's still plenty to do in the other two competitions Juve are still taking part in — of a season that started out with everybody going to YouTube to see Antonio Conte and his bloodshot and bag-filled eyes stepping down as manager right after training camp started. Nobody knew what Allegri would do with the squad. Would they continue their dominance of Serie A? Would they take a step back and get a serious run for their money from an upstart Roma squad? Would it just be a complete mess that saw somebody else become manager when the season came to an end?
There were ebbs and flows like any season. But when it was all said and done, it turned out that it was just the same team with a new look — both on the sideline and in the tactical setup.
.@andreabarzagli2: "It's right that we're not going over the top with our celebrations. We've got two other competitions to think about."— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) May 2, 2015
Fittingly, the final score just so happened to be Allegri's favorite scoreline. You just gotta make sure the team is alert from the start of the game to the very end of it, right, Max? Yep, they certainly showed that.
I guess this is the new, Juventus version of a poker. Not that I'm complaining, of course.
Uno. Due. Tre. Quattro. Siamo noi, siamo noi...
(Seemed appropriate given how many titles Juve have won on the trot.)
Random thoughts and observations
- This was Sampdoria's first loss at home this season. You're welcome.
- Juventus wins the title and Gigi Buffon gets a shutout. Seems like it all makes perfect sense to me.
- Andrea Pirlo: Four years with Juventus, four Scudetti. That's a pretty good pace.
- Arturo Vidal was fantastic against Sampdoria. You can say it's because of the sweet game-wining goal he scored in the first half, and you wouldn't be wrong. But there's a whole lot more that went into it than being the guy who delivered the three Scudetto-winning points on Saturday night. He had four tackles, six interceptions, three clearances, and was an all-around monster in the center of the park. Man oh man, if Vidal plays like that against Real Madrid...
- Another midfielder who had a damn good game? Stefano Sturaro. That's not just because he was the only player in a Juventus jersey to have more tackles than Vidal. It was the entire game. Based on who he used to play for, you could tell this game meant a little more to Sturaro. Four of his five tackles in the game came within the first 40 minutes of the game. That's a Vidal-like pace. Sturaro's motor never stops running while he's out on the field. It really doesn't. That Vidal-Marchisio-Sturaro midfield sure does put a lot of pressure on opposing teams.
- Carlos Tévez didn't score a goal Saturday. I know, I guess these things happen from time to time.
- Remember that tackle and blocked shot Leonardo Bonucci had in the second half that kept the shutout intact? Yeah, that just seemed like a wonderfully fantastic single moment that sums up his season. (Other than the funny pictures of him falling over the advertising boards, of course.)
- Lichtsteiner's cross came with his left foot. When's the last time we saw him deliver such a peach of a cross with his weaker foot? I dunno.
- I love this team. So much.
- Simone Padoin has now won four Scudetti with Juventus. This is not a drill. That's now more than Roma has won in their history. Sorry, but not sorry.
- Now it's onto Real Madrid, who are currently cruising against Sevilla at halftime. I guess they're playing well, too, huh? Yeah, nobody expected this whole "Champions League semifinal" thing to be easy.