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Juventus vs. Roma

Juventus vs Roma
Coppa Italia Quarterfinal: Wednesday, January 22, 2020 at 2:45 pm ET (Allianz Stadium)
Line and Odds: Juventus -181/Roma +419 — Over -121; Under -108

FREE SOCCER Pick Juventus vs Roma

Giallorossi travel to Turin in the Coppa Italia quarterfinals

Juventus host Roma for the second time in less than ten days in the knockout stages of the Coppa Italia. The Old Lady are looking a side to beat this season under Maurizio Sarri who seems to have cracked the winning formula even if his team doesn’t perform to its full potential. Roma, on the other hand, have largely encountered the other side of the spectrum. Paulo Fonseca’s side has dominated games several times, but just seem to lack the killer instinct at times and this has cost them points.

The outfit from Turin comes into this match after four consecutive victories in all competitions after a 3-1 loss to Lazio in the Supercoppa Italiana. Juventus first beat Cagliari 4-0 at home before travelling to the Stadio Olimpico to beat today’s opponents 2-1, both on their way to the summit of the Serie A. The Bianconeri then beat Udinese 4-0 in the Coppa Italia before returning to league action with a 2-1 win over Parma. Wednesday’s match comes at the right time for Sarri’s men who will be hoping to make it five out of five.

The Giallorossi come into this game after a mixed run of results, with three wins and two losses in their last five matches. A 4-1 win at Fiorentina was followed by a shock 2-0 loss to Torino and an unlucky 2-1 loss to Juventus, both at home, all in the Serie A. However, their form has improved since then and Roma have recorded two consecutive victories. they first saw off Parma 2-0 in the Coppa Italia before winning 3-1 at Genoa in the league. With a Serie A title looking highly unlikely, Fonseca will hope his side delivers the goods on Wednesday and takes a step towards lifting some silverware.

FREE SOCCER Prediction Roma vs Juventus

Last Time Out

Juventus ran out 2-1 winners at the Stadio Olimpico on Matchday 19 of the Serie A. Sarri’s side were never at their dominant best but a neat finish from centre-back Merih Demiral and a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty had them two goals to the good in just 10 minutes from the start. Roma toiled away, but only had a Diego Perotti penalty with a quarter of the game left to play to show for their efforts. Fonseca’s side had up to 22 shots towards goal and six on target, marginally greater possession and completed more passes than the Old Lady who mustered just five shots towards goal and four on target. But they failed to make full use of their chances and Juve held on to secure a crucial win.

Key Players

Juventus

Cristiano Ronaldo will undoubtedly be Juventus’s most important player in this match. The Portuguese legend has already managed 18 goals in 24 matches across all competitions this season and comes into this game having scored nine goals in his last six matches. Ronaldo has formed a potent attacking trio alongside Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala and if it is his day, he can single-handedly take the match away from Roma.

Matthijs de Ligt will be the other crucial player for the outfit from turin. A big-money arrival at the start of the season after a dream run with Ajax, a lot was expected from the Dutch centre-back. However, de Ligt has not hit the ground running in Italy and has received a lot of criticism from fans and pundits. The 20-year old has shown some marked improvement in the last few games and with Giorgio Chiellini and Merih Demiral out with injuries, he will hope to capitalize and nail down a berth in Sarri’s starting eleven.

Roma

A lot will be expected from Nicola Kalinic who is yet to score in nine matches across all competitions this season. The Croatian has spent almost the entire season as second-choice striker behind Edin Dzeko, but is likely to get a rare opportunity to start due to the Bosnian’s suspension. Kalinic has shown previously that he is a capable striker and he will hope to have a good performance against Juventus, which will go a long way in helping him compete with Dzeko for a starting spot once he is back.

Lorenzo Pellegrini will be the other vital player for Roma. The 23-year old has revelled in an advanced position in central midfield, having contributed three goals and seven assists so far this season. Pellegrini is brilliant on and off the ball and has the eye to pick out players with pinpoint passes. The Italian will be required to pull the strings in a depleted Roma midfield if the Giallorossi are to put up a fight against a strong Juventus side.

Team News

Juventus

The Bianconeri will be without Giorgio Chiellini, Sami Khedira and Merih Demiral due to long-term injuries. Alex Sandro and Adrien Rabiot also seemed to have picked up knocks in the weekend and are doubtful for this match. Juan Cuadrado trained individually due to a fever, but is likely to be fit for the game. Sarri did mention that a Ronaldo’s participation will be analysed ahead of a busy schedule, but he too is likely to play.

Predicted Line-up: Buffon; Cuadrado, Bonucci, de Ligt, Danilo; Matuidi, Pjanic, Bentancur; Ronaldo, Higuain, Dybala.

Roma

Roma have plenty to worry about on the injury front. Nicolo Zaniolo, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Javier Pastore, Davide Zappacosta and Diego Perotti have all been ruled out due to injuries while Edin Dzeko is suspended.
Alessandro Florenzi, Federico Fazio and Aleksandar Kolarov are however expected to return and this will definitely bolster the defence of a depleted squad.

Predicted Line-up: Lopez; Kolarov, Mancini, Smalling, Florenzi; Diawara, Veretout; Kluivert, Pellegrini, Under; Kalinic.

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