Juventus 2-1 Torino
Vidal pen 15 (J), Bruno Peres 23 (T), Pirlo 94 (J)
Serie A – Week 13 [30th November 2014] – Juventus Stadium
Arturo Vidal scored three goals today and Juventus still needed a (literally) last second goal from Andrea Pirlo to win 2-1. Well, that’s not totally true. Torino gave up a penalty within moments of the match starting, and Vidal converted his first attempt. The referee ordered Vidal to re-do the kick, and he once again scored on the penalty. Of course, this only counted for the one goal. There was a player in the box on the first attempt, and it had to be re-taken.
Later, he scored in the second half, but it was – probably correctly – called offside. This would have been the winning goal. Torino scored in the first half when Bruno Peres made a beautiful run through Juve’s half, and then buried his chance from some distance with a skillful finish. It stung, but for an observer it was probably enjoyable.
Peres was behind most of Torino’s scoring chances. He nearly scored a second goal off of a header in the second half, and he led a few counter-attacks that failed to really lead anywhere once the ball got to the 18 yard box. Elsewhere, ex-Juventus striker Fabio Quagliarella also had a dangerous chance on goal, but a last second challenge was enough to force his shot wide.
Overall, we saw a very organized Torino side versus a somewhat flat Juventus side. Juve certainly tried to attack throughout the game, and they got forward in numbers. But Torino just sat back, and they constantly were hitting Juventus on the counter. They didn’t necessarily make a threatening attack every time, but there were countless occassions were Torino would lay back, dispossess Juve around the 18 yard box,and then play the ball to Quagliarella or Amauri, who wouldn’t necessarily create anything, but were rather hard to dispossess.
That was basically the pattern that the game fell into. Stephan Lichtsteiner’s late red card didn’t change this either, as Max Allegri subbed on Angelo Ogbonna for Carlos Tevez, so Juve could switch to a back three and just go all out on the attack. This was risky due to Torino’s ability to counter, their one-man advantage, and of course the fact that Tevez is our best attacking player.
Indeed, Torino did penetrate Juve’s half far more often after that switch, but only one or two of these attempts were even the slightest bit dangerous. Juventus, for her part, was attacking, or trying to, but not creating too much. We saw lots of times where Juve got stuck out wide in Torino’s half, unable to do anything aside from playing in a cross. Except, Torino was doing a good job of blocking those.
No, all seemed lost. The game seemed set to finish 1-1. Juventus had a last second corner, and the players were passing the ball around the 18 yard box looking for something, anything, to get that winning goal. Andrea Pirlo made a late run towards the box, Vidal fed him the ball just outside the box, and Pirlo took a chance. Pirlo’s effort was a low drive to the left corner of Torino’s goal, and while it looked like it would be easily blocked, it ended up floating past all the Torino defenders into the net for a second Juventus goal, and a Juventus win. The Maestro had orchestrated another win for Juventus.
Man of the Match: Andrea Pirlo
Flop of the Match: Stephan Lichtsteiner
Pass Accuracy: 90%
Shots on Target: 3
Total Shots: 16
Ball Possession: 61%
Juventus: Storari; Lichtsteiner, Bonucci, Chiellini, Evra; Pogba, Pirlo, Marchisio (Pereyra 64); Vidal; Tevez (Ogbonna 83), Llorente (Morata 58)
Torino : Gillet; Maksimovic, Glik, Moretti; Peres, Vives (Benassi 53), Gazzi, El Kaddouri (Sanchez Mino 92), Darmian; Amauri, Quagliarella (Larrondo 72)
Sent off: Lichtsteiner 78 (J)