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Juventus 3 - Paris Saint-Germain 2: Not-so-initial reaction and random observations

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International Champions Cup 2017 - Paris Saint-Germain v Juventus Photo by Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images

I know it’s a friendly and Juventus’ 3-2 win over Paris Saint-Germain doesn’t mean much in the grand scheme of things, but there’s something about Claudio Marchisio scoring goals — and subsequently celebrating them — that gives me warm fuzzies inside. And doing so while wearing the captain’s armband? Ultimate Marchisio fanboying going on, folks.

Yes, Marchisio’s late penalty against PSG proved to be the difference maker as Juventus did what they couldn’t do earlier in the week against Barcelona — actually win a game in the International Champions Cup.

It’s not like this means a whole heck of a lot, but I like to see Juventus win.

However....

  • Juve’s effort on defense on PSG’s goal that made it 1-1 ... not great.
  • Juve’s effort on marking Javier Pastore on PSG’s goal that made it 2-2 ... not great.
  • Juve’s effort on defending counterattacks for a good portion of the night ... not great.

However...

  • That combination play between Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuain for the opening goal ... absolutely gorgeous.
  • Marchisio’s shot — with his left foot, no less — for Juve’s second goal of the night ... absolutely gorgeous.
  • That ball that Mattia De Sciglio feathered through the PSG defense to find Stefano Sturaro, who subsequently clanged his shot off the post ... absolutely gorgeous. (The first part, not the second half of the equation.)

So basically like every preseason game, there was some good and some bad to take out of Juve’s win over PSG. Seems like a game that’s being played in late-July where different players are at different stages of their preseason training, doesn’t it? Yeah, pretty much.

RANDOM THOUGHTS AND OBSERVATIONS

  • Memo to the Juventus online store people: Please make the keeper jersey that Gigi Buffon was wearing tonight available for purchase so that you can take my money.
  • What somebody might forget about Higuain’s goal: Pipa was the one who not only won the header, but also hustled his ass off to keep it inbounds, pass it back to Alex Sandro and keep the play going. That’s a lot of ground covered in a short period of time from Juve’s No. 9. (And knowing what kind of shape he was in this time last July, probably something he wouldn’t have been able to do 12 months ago.)
  • Dybala has played 90 minutes through two preseason games so far this summer. Is it safe to say he has been one of — if not the top — Juve player?
  • One more note regarding Marchisio’s first goal of the night: That explosiveness from Moise Kean right before the pass to Marchisio, you don’t see that from a lot of players on the Juventus roster. And this is something we’re saying about a 17-year-old kid who obviously still has some growing up to do physically. To steal a term from some of the people I interact with during my day job, Moise Kean is a “dude” and it’s quite nice that he could be spending a lot of time with the Juve senior squad this season.
  • That being said, Kean was rather so-so against PSG. Had some good moments (the assist to Marchisio) and some not so good moments (turnovers). Again, he’s 17. That kind of stuff is going to happen.
  • Anybody else cringe a little when Kean went down in the box on the “tackle” in the box that led to Marchisio’s game-winning goal? That’s not the way a leg and/or knee is supposed to move. Thank goodness he got up and looked to be fine.
  • I personally would like Daniele Rugani to start alongside Giorgio Chiellini against Roma in Juve’s final game in the United States this summer because both Medhi Benatia and Andrea Barzagli have been pretty meh so far.
  • Who else here was excited to see Rodrigo Bentancur playing in his much more preferred deep-lying midfield role? The boy is going to be really, really good — and it doesn’t seem like it’s all that far off, too.
  • Or is it Rodrigo “ENTANCU”? That’s what the back of his jersey seems to say. (Fix that, Juventus.)
  • Dani Alves got shown a yellow card for saying something stupid to the referee after a teammate committed a foul. Looks like the change of scenery hasn’t changed the act.
  • Nobody got hurt. That’s good.