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Game Time Thread: Juventus vs. Lazio

Well this is an interesting way to come back from the international break.

Juventus v Zenit St. Petersburg: Group H - UEFA Champions League Photo by Harry Langer/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

We knew, eventually, the day would come when Juventus would face Maurizio Sarri again. There was always going to be a club, and in this case Lazio, that was going to bring back the man who treats a carton of cigarettes like it is newfound Halloween candy. Just because it didn’t work at Juve didn’t mean that Sarri’s managerial career was over, and Lazio has been a pretty solid landing spot through the first handful of months in the Italian capital.

And, as we come back from the November international break, we now get to see what Sarri’s new project is all about up close and personal.

Tonight, the Stadio Olimpico is the place where the first meeting with Sarri will take place since Juventus decided to part ways with the veteran manager nearly a year and a half ago. In quite the ironic twist, Sarri will be facing the guy he replaced and was supposed to be an upgrade over in Max Allegri, who has obviously had his ups and downs to begin the second time around as Juventus manager this season. The two Italian managers are responsible for winning six of Juve’s nine straight titles — which is nice — and will now face one another for the first time since Sarri was at Napoli and trying to dethrone Juventus during its decade-long reign over Serie A.

But as we know now, that is very much not the case anymore.

Both Allegri and Sarri might as well have the same kind of end objective for this Serie A season, and that’s to try and guide their respective teams in a top four finish. The problem is, both Juve and Lazio are currently outside of the top four and separated only by three points with a whole lot of competition for one of those ever-so-valuable Champions League spots in the Serie A standings. Lazio is missing leading scorer Ciro Immobile with late fitness checks still happening, while we know that Juventus is without a host of players, including Paulo Dybala and Giorgio Chiellini.

So we’ll see if Allegri can work a little bit of magic with a reworked starting lineup compared to the one that closed the pre-international break set of matches with wins over Zenit St. Petersburg and Fiorentina. And they’re able to do that, then you’re suddenly looking at Juventus and Lazio being level on points — which sure would be nice.

MATCH INFO

When: Saturday, Nov. 20, 2021.

Where: Stadio Olimpico, Rome, Italy.

Official kickoff time: 6 p.m. local time in Italy and across Europe; 5 p.m. in the United Kingdom; 12 p.m. Eastern Time; 9 a.m. Pacific Time.

STARTING LINEUPS

Juventus starting XI (4-4-2): Szczesny; Danilo, Bonucci, De Ligt, Pellegrini; Cuadrado, Locatelli, McKennie, Rabiot; Chiesa, Morata

Juventus bench: Perin, Pinsoglio, Alex Sandro, Rugani, Arthur, Bentancur, Kulusevski, Kean, Kaio Jorge.

Lazio starting XI (4-3-3): Reina; Lazzari, Luiz Felipe, Acerbi, Hysaj; Milinkovic-Savic, Cataldi, Luis Alberto; Felipe Anderson, Pedro, Zaccagni.

HOW TO WATCH

Television: BT Sport 1 (United Kingdom).

Online/mobile: Paramount+ (United States); BTSport.com, BT Sport App (United Kingdom); DAZN (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.