Serie A does no favors when it comes to making us wait for the games to start meaning something. Not that it’s a surprise because it’s just so typically Italian, but you know what I mean when I say that leave it to the country’s top flight to make us test our patience.
The Premier League already has three games under its belt. The top leagues in Spain, Germany and France are already underway. That leaves one last of the Big 5 to get going — and I think you all can figure out who that is.
But the wait is no more. And it just so happens that our favorite bianconero-colored club is kicking off the festivities as the ones to lift the curtain on the peninsula.
Juventus, minus their first-year manager and their new No. 8 who hails from Wales, begins its latest Serie A title defense in the land of prosciutto against Parma. It is the start of a season that, regardless of what Sarri’s health might be at the moment, is one where the Scudetto race is much more open than it has been in recent years.
The first of 38 steps is now upon us, though.
What will this version of Juventus look like? Hopefully not a finished product, obviously, since history tells us that Maurizio Sarri’s takes more than a month or two to completely implement and have his team acclimate to before they start truly cooking. And with Juventus having some important newcomers at important positions — or, at the very least, new players trying to work their way into starting roles — it may well take some time before this team truly resembles what Sarri wants it to look like.
For now, however, we will have to understand that Juventus is a work in progress. Hopefully we won’t be saying that in January, February or March, but since it’s the third weekend of August, it will be interesting to actually see where this team is at.
There’s only one way to find out.
And unlike the last handful of times we’ve seen them the past few weeks, this one counts.
When: Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019
Where: Stadio Ennio Tardini, Parma, Italy
Official kickoff time: 6 p.m. local time in Italy and across Europe; 5 p.m. in the United Kingdom; High Noon Eastern Time; 9 a.m. Pacific Time
Juventus starting XI (4-3-3): Szczesny; De Sciglio, Bonucci, Chiellini, Alex Sandro; Khedira, Pjanic, Matuidi; Douglas Costa, Higuain, Ronaldo
Juventus bench: Buffon, Pinsoglio, de Ligt, Demiral, Danilo, Emre Can, Rabiot, Bentancur, Cuadrado, Bernardeschi, Dybala, Mandzukic
Parma starting XI (4-3-3): Sepe; Laurini, Iacoponi, Bruno Alves, Gagliolo; Hernani, Brugman, Barillà; Kulusevski, Inglese, Gervinho
HOW TO WATCH
Television: RAI Italia America (United States); RAI Italia America, TLN (Canada); Premier Sports 1 (United Kingdom); Sky Calcio 1, Sky Supercalcio HD, Sky Sport Serie A (Italy)
Online/mobile: ESPN+ (United States); DAZN (Canada); Premium Player HD (United Kingdom); SKY Go Italia (Italy)
Other live viewing options can be found here, and as always, you can also follow along with us live and all the stupid things we say on Twitter. If you haven’t already, join the community on Black & White & Read All Over, and join in the discussion below.