This is Juventus Football Club, 9-time straight winners of the Serie A. The past decade has seen them defeat and in some cases, demolish teams on their way to winning the Scudetto. But, there is an uncertain air as we approach Italian football in these uncertain times. With a new management in place and some fresh players in the squad, the elephant in the room is clear – can Juventus do the 10-peat?
Juventus have so far brought in 23-years old mercurial midfielder Arthur Melo alongside Weston Mckennie from Schalke. With a host of existing players also back from loan, most notably Dejan Kulusevski and Luca Pellegrini. If latest rumours are to be belived, they are also close to signing Edin Dzeko from Roma. So far, Juventus have lost Gonzalo Higuain, Blaise Matuidi and Miralem Pjanic. All in all, it has been a decent window in the transfer market for the ‘Old Lady’.
Funnily enough, Juventus’ biggest strength is not technical in nature. It is not about their attack or defence, but their elite champion spirit. The idea that they can win games even when things are not going well for them. Eventually, the efforts are concentrated for short periods of time, and they sneak out victories. Add in the fact that they have enough quality on the bench that can step onto the pitch and create instant pitch, and that is something that bodes well for Juventus.
Quite simply, the unpredictability that Andrea Pirlo’s coaching will offer. Juventus have been fortunate in recent times to have talented managers such as Antonio Conte, Max Allegri and lately Maurizio Sarri. In contrast, the ex-star Juventus midfielder has no prior coaching experience with any top-flight team. Another weakness presents in the form of attack not cohesively functioning at times. They are much reliant on the likes of Dybala and Ronaldo to bail them out, which needs to be improved by Pirlo.
Who else, but Cristiano Ronaldo? It only seems like yesterday that Ronaldo embraced the football world and put his skills on show. At 35, where most players suffer sharp decline, he is fitter and hungrier than ever. The fact that his numbers read 31 goals and 5 assists in 38 games last season, shows how high his standards have continued to be over the years. In this new gen team, he will look to be the focal point, and under Pirlo can finally start playing the centre forward role – which he does to such a devastating effect.
Predicted Table Finish
Champions! But only just. Inter Milan under superior backing and refreshment, have a mission of their own. And it could prove to be a title race that goes down right to the wire. Juventus will start as favourites, but can they keep up the tag under new manager Pirlo is going to be very interesting to watch.