Match Preview Serie A, Match Scouting Serie A

Scouting Report : AC Milan v Juventus

February 28, 2014 - 10:57 am

There is not a lot of material to judge the new Milan’s Seedorf, only eight games. The score: four wins, one draw, three losses (one in the League, one in the Champions League, one in Coppa Italia). Without underestimating their accomplishments, three of these victories in Serie A (score: 4-1-1) have been lucky: a late penalty against Hellas Verona, two late goals against Cagliari to come back, a late screamer by Mario Balotelli against Bologna. Yep, Juventus should really be careful to the final part of the game.

Of course, it is not easy to take over a team of this magnitude in the middle of the season, especially if you are not a coach. Also, beside the results, the team is clearly progressing. The one against Sampdoria was a good all-around performance. They played well also against Atletico Madrid, but the woodwork stopped them multiple times. The good results obtained in the League are propelling them, the environment is more serene and is supporting the squad after the departure of Allegri: Juve won’t face the best Milan, but surely a healthy team.

It’s easy to pinpoint Milan’s forte: the three CAMs behind the striker. With their movements and their creativity, they make the defenders lose track of them, giving the opponents no points of reference to guard them. Kaka slumped a bit after a strong start, then Taarabt emerged: two goals in three matches for the Moroccan who joined from England, and a streak of good performances. While the former Fulham and QPR quickly adapted to Serie A, Honda wasn’t able to do that so far and he might not start on Sunday. Rami, also, has been impressive, captaining a defense that due to Mexes and Bonera’s inconsistent performances wasn’t reliable. They have conceded eight goals in eight matches (three against Napoli).

The lineup is still quite a rebus. Milan have many players that are injured but close to returning and might do that against Juventus. De Sciglio suffered an ankle injury against Atletico Madrid: he’s probable, like Pazzini, who was hit in the nose (but didn’t break it) in the last match. Balotelli, who fell badly and injured his shoulder in the Champions League, is still questionable: it would be the third Juventus clash in a row he misses. Zapata is questionable too because of a thigh injury: if he can’t make it, Bonera is likely to start in his place.

Therefore, Abbiati on goal (even though Amelia played well against Sampdoria, when Abbiati had the flu), Abate or De Sciglio on the right, Emanuelson on the left (Juve should exploit this flank as he’s not an elite defender, to say the least), Rami and Bonera (or Zapata) in the middle of the defense. De Jong will start in the midfield, then Seedorf will have to choose if he wants a more combative squad (with Essien) or a more technical one (with Montolivo). The Milan captain seems the favorite. Honda (or Poli)-Kakà-Taarabt behind the striker.

Against Sampdoria and Cagliari, Rami and Pazzini scored on set pieces: Juventus had some troubles in the recent past in these situations, it should be something to keep an eye on. Milan currently sit in ninth position with 35 points, four less than the first EL spot available (Hellas Verona’s), 16 less than Napoli and 21 less than Juventus. Their overall record is nine wins, eight draws and eight losses. At home, they are 6-4-2.

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    Papilaya(John)™★★★ February 28, 2014 at 11:19 am


    this derby is always a special one. regardless of who is or is not on form, we shouldnt doubt Milan. i ve always believe the team that wants it the most comes out as victors… but as usual i wont be able to watch this one. btw happy 3rd(?) anniversary il gol di muntari :p

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      adp1974 March 1, 2014 at 4:04 pm

      2 years.

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    BelgianJuventino March 1, 2014 at 11:03 am

    Just read funny transfer rumours 😛
    Juve getting rid of Quags, Vucinic and Osvaldo, to make room for Torres and Lukaku,who should be the new strikers.
    Meanwhile Barca offers Alexis +cash for Vidal.

    Dafuq 😛

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      JuventusVidal March 1, 2014 at 1:52 pm

      I just read one saying we’re interested in signing tiago on a free. Lol yea cuz his first stint here went so well lmao

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        BelgianJuventino March 1, 2014 at 2:41 pm

        permanently injured 😛

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      DutchJuve March 1, 2014 at 5:12 pm

      The 2nd best player from Chile for the best player of Chile + a little cash? Not worth it.

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    dinodelfino March 1, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    Another tough game against the Milan,come on Juve,a Trabzonspor performance will do nicely!