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Recapping Juventus Women’s historic winning streak

For the first time in nearly two years, the Juventus women did not grab all three points from a league match. But even in a draw, there was plenty of excitement which was a theme in the 36-match winning streak.

Football woman supercup final Juventus-Milan Photo by Massimo Insabato/Archivio Massimo Insabato/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images

Things don’t often look bleak for Juventus Women, especially while competing in Serie A Femminile, but it was not the best start to Saturday’s match against Fiorentina. For the first time since November 2018, Juve trailed by two goals in a league match after Sara Gama’s first-half own goal double the visitors’ lead.

But as has happened many times before, Juventus fought back and still looked like the better team for a majority of the game. They erased the deficit just 13 minutes into the second half and suddenly looked very likely to grab three more points for the league table.

That didn’t happen this time, though, and despite the impressive comeback to tie the game, you could tell there was plenty of disappointment around the stadium and in the team because this team is not used to walking away with just one point. In fact, Saturday’s draw marked Juventus’ first non-win in a Serie A fixture since February 2020.

Juventus had won 36 consecutive league matches prior to Saturday’s game, and while the unbeaten streak has now been extended to 53 league games, it’s not quite the same feeling. So before the next winning streak begins, let’s take a look back at the good times that fueled the historic run spanning three seasons, beginning with the first win which came just days before COVID-19 first shut down the league.

On Feb. 16, 2020, Juventus held a slim three-point lead in the league table and had Inter Milan coming to town. It was a frustrating first half for the hosts but a 43rd-minute goal by Barbara Bonansea got the team rolling just before the break and they never looked back. Juventus scored four more in the second half, including a brace by Cristiana Girelli, on its way to a 5-1 victory which ended up being the win to clinch the league title in the eventually shortened season.

Without any resumption of the league during the summer, Juventus went over six months before the next league match, but they returned with a 2-0 win over Hellas Verona to start the 2020-21 season. But things wouldn’t remain so easy with one of the biggest challenges to the winning streak came before it really got started.

On Aug. 29, 2020, Juventus was hosting an Empoli squad that many people believed could be the surprise team of the season in Serie A. And if people didn’t believe it before the match, they certainly believed it once it got started.

Empoli held the lead in Turin after just 10 minutes played in the second half as the visitors erased an early deficit and went up 2-1 with a goal from teenage sensation Elisa Polli. But Juventus was there to fight back again, erasing Empoli’s lead and taking a lead of its own with a penalty from Girelli in the 58th minute.

It seemed like the upset watch was over as Empoli’s attack was slowing down and Juventus was in control but the roller coaster match had a couple extra twists in the final 10 minutes. First, Empoli leveled the score with a penalty of its own in the 85th minute, only to see Juventus awarded a spot kick in added time. Girelli sank her second penalty kick of the day in the 93rd minute, giving Juventus a 4-3 victory in one of the more entertaining matches of the streak.

Things were rarely that dramatic for Juventus for the rest of the season but that didn’t stop the team from having fun and that definitely showed in the midseason meeting with Pink Bari. Juventus was cruising in the second half and led 3-0 but a rare mistake in the back led to a goal being conceded and it apparently did not sit well with the team because they turned it up a notch for the final half hour.

Two minutes after Pink Bari scored, Girelli scored her first of the night. Andrea Staskova scored three minutes after that with Girelli added her second and third goals by the 72nd minute, pushing Juve’s lead from 3-1 to 7-1 in less than 11 minutes. Girelli added another to her tally by the end of the night and Juventus ended up winning 9-1, its largest margin of victory during the winning streak.

Juventus clinched the league title just two weeks after that win and while the match to win a trophy is usually worth highlighting, the club had a bigger goal in mind: It’s first perfect season. And with just a couple of matches remaining, there was no let up.

With the league title all wrapped up, Juventus hosted Inter for the final match of the season and it was a party from the first whistle. Sara Gama opened the scoring in the fourth minute with Girelli doubling the lead less than a minute later, both being assisted by Annahita Zamanian. Arianna Caruso added the third in the 11th minute while Tuija Hyyrynen scored a rare goal for herself six minutes later. Juventus had some mercy for the rest of the game but Staskova would eventually finish the scoring in the second half as the hosts finished off the 22-0-0 season with a 5-0 victory.

So the streak was at 24 matches entering this season and even considering another perfect season seemed like a crazy thing to do especially with so many changes to the coaching staff and the team. But Juventus looked just as good, if not better, to start the season.

Juventus won their first three matches by a 3-0 scoreline and didn’t get their first challenge until a trip to Rome back in October. And what a challenge it was.

Roma took the lead in the first half and held it for just over half an hour but Martina Rosucci leveled the match with her first goal of the season in the 64th minute. And just when the winning streak appeared to be wrapping up, Staskova found the winner.

Four weeks later, Juventus was involved with another dramatic match which included Staskova being the hero again. Bonansea put Juventus in front in the 71st minute only to see Inter tie it up five minutes later. But Juventus refused to be denied of the full three points yet again.

Things weren’t so dramatic over the next few weeks with Juventus outscoring its opponents 18-2 to extend the streak to 36 games. That stretch included a 5-2 victory over a pesky AC Milan team that didn’t want to go away and actually had the match tied after 70 minutes. But Lisa Boattin knocked home a penalty before Staskova and Hurtig helped finish off the match with a pair of late goals.

Juventus is still riding its unbeaten streak and the club’s domestic success is really getting ridiculous but this is one winning streak that has finally been put to rest. Now it’s time to start another one and maybe this time it can involve all competitions, not just the league. I could go for lifting that Champions League trophy in Turin on May 22.