As interesting as the Serie A fixture list release day is always an interesting one, we had the added twist this year of a World Cup being held right as the midway point of the 2022-23 season arrives. Because of that, the schedule was always going to be a little weird and/or wonky — especially for those like Juventus who will also have European football mixed in.
While we wait for the Champions League group stage draw to add the final piece to Juve’s early months of the season, we now know what the league schedule will look like.
As announced Friday, Juventus’ new-look squad led by hopefully some new-look tactics from their stubborn Livornese manager will open the 2022-23 season on Sunday, Aug. 14, at home against Sassuolo, the definition of the mid-table club that has been a thorn in the Bianconeri’s side over the years. It is the first of three home fixtures in Juve’s first four matches that will be played at Allianz Stadium, giving Juventus a chance to basically do the opposite of what they did last season — you know, collect early points.
Juventus’ last game before the six-week World Cup break will be on Nov. 13 against Lazio at Allianz Stadium. Juve will play their first game back on Jan. 4 against one of the Serie A newbies this season, Cremonese.
As was the case like last season, the ritorno will not match up in the same order as the andata, which means Juventus will begin the second half of the 2022-23 campaign at home on Jan. 29 against Monza, with a return date against Sassuolo not until the middle of April.
What’s the biggest thing that jumps off the page besides the obvious fact of things starting earlier than they did last season or the fact that the World Cup is in NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER?
It’s the fact that there’s no months of big fixture after big fixture stacked up on top of one another like there was in January 2022 or something that like we saw. That all could change once the Champions League and Coppa Italia schedules get dropped into the equation, but when it comes to the simple Serie A fixture list there isn’t big game after big game where it’s a top-of-the-table matchup. The hope in that is twofold:
- Juventus can actually get some consistency going with results.
- Barring another injury situation like there was for much of last season, Max Allegri will actually be able to rotate his squad and keep his most important players fresh rather than essentially being forced to run them out every few days because there are no other options.
You look at the August and September fixtures and outside of Roma (Round 3) and Fiorentina (Round 5), there’s pretty much all lower half of the table clubs on there. That’s the chance to bank some very early points and try and start this new phase of the Allegri experience in positive fashion as the squad continues to gel and find some good mojo.
That’s the hope at least. We’ll see what actually happens come the second weekend of August and beyond.