Here we go again, folks. Juventus has a relegation battler next up on the schedule and a very limited amount of resources available because of all these damn injuries still causing problems ahead of a big Champions League fixture on the horizon.
Max Allegri is very aware of this, as you might expect. That’s why he said what he said during his pre-match press conference on Friday.
“We’ve reached the decisive moment of the season,” said Allegri. “With two months to play, this is the run-in. There’s the international break in a week, but in the meantime, we have an intense week ahead of us.
“Our first objective is to defeat Samp, then the second is to qualify to the quarter finals of the Champions League.”
That first objective comes tonight when Juventus heads over to the Marassi to face a struggling Sampdoria side that is just a few points above the relegation zone and hoping that Marco Giampaolo can work his magic once more. Before we can truly start thinking about Wednesday night’s potentially season-defining match against Villarreal in Turin, we must think about what’s going on in Genoa first. And that means hoping that Juventus, injuries and all, can continue to pick up points even though they are very much winning ugly these days.
That’s very much how Allegri is playing it these days. Yes, even more than earlier this season when the squad was healthier and there was actually the ability to rotate and attempt to keep his players fresh.
These days, though, that definitely can’t be said about the state of his team. They’re getting results, but there’s been so few chances to rotate that the couple of extra days of rest they’ve had this week with no midweek fixture hopefully pay their dividends.
Translation: Juventus needs to continue the good times knowing full well what’s at stake both in this game, the next game and the next few after that.
Like Allegri said, Juve can’t afford to let up now knowing that there’s two months to go. There’s business to take care of domestically. There’s business to take care of in the Champions League — which will hopefully last beyond just this coming Wednesday. There’s wins to be had, and it should start over the next couple of hours.
When: Saturday, March 12, 2022.
Where: Stadio Comunale Luigi Ferraris, Genoa, Italy.
Official kickoff time: 6 p.m. local time in Italy and around Europe, 5 p.m. in the United Kingdom, 12 p.m. Eastern time, 9 a.m. Pacific time.
Juventus starting XI (4-3-3/4-4-2): Szczesny; Danilo, de Ligt, Rugani, Pellegrini; Locatelli, Arthur, Rabiot; Cuadrado, Kean, Morata.
Juventus bench: Perin, Pinsoglio, De Sciglio, Alex Sandro, Stramaccioni, Miretti, Vlahovic, Aké.
Sampdoria starting XI (4-3-1-2): Falcone; Bereszynski, Yoshida, Colley, Augello; Candreva, Rincon, Thorsby; Sensi; Caputo, Quagliarella.
HOW TO WATCH
Television: BT Sport 3 (United Kingdom).
Streaming: 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.