Juventus vs Sassuolo

Juventus continue to play catch-up on Serie A pacesetters Inter Milan but look in a pole position to reduce the gap to two points as bottom-half Sassuolo arrive at the Allianz Stadium.

Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri celebrated his 400th match in charge with a scintillating 4-0 romping of Frosinone in the Coppa Italia quarter-finals, extending their jaw-dropping unbeaten run in domestic action to 16 games (W13, D3). If you’re a fan of omens, Juventus’ dominant spell of form started immediately after a goal-glutted 4-2 defeat at Sassuolo in September. However, there’s no room for complacency as ‘I Bianconeri’ needed Dusan Vlahovic’s 90th-minute header to complete a last-gasp 2-1 comeback against rock-bottom Salernitana in their last Serie A outing. Despite only netting three more goals than 14th Sassuolo this season, Allegri’s men have rediscovered their scoring instincts in the lead-up to this revenge-poised contest, bagging an average of four goals per game across their last three competitive matches.

On the other hand, Sassuolo’s season hasn’t reached the promised heights after that illustrious win against Juventus, as they had to wait until the start of 2024 to post their first Serie A victory at the Mapei Stadium since then. But a spirited 1-0 triumph against top-four-bidding Fiorentina yielded a noteworthy takeaway, marking Sassuolo’s first clean sheet in Serie A this season! Despite ending a six-match winless streak in all competitions (D1, L5), Alessio Dionisi’s men begin this round perilously close to the drop zone, with only two points separating them from 18th-placed Hellas Verona. Only one win across their 11 previous visits to the Allianz Stadium (D1, L9) suggests they’re likely to stay where they are after this round.

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