Juventus
    Juventus
      03.10.2016 11:30 - in: Serie A S

      Five talking points from #EmpoliJuve

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      Juventus.com runs through the standout topics to emerge from Sunday’s 3-0 victory away to Empoli
      Top at the break!

      Upon returning to the top of the table following the home win against Cagliari on 21 September, Juventus have ensured that they remain at the Serie A summit with subsequent victories away to Palermo and now Empoli.

      Eighteen points out of a possible 21 represent a more than healthy return at the start of the season – 10 better off than at this stage last term – and Napoli’s loss at the weekend to Atalanta has now allowed the Bianconeri to go four points clear of their main Scudetto challengers so far in 2016/17.

      And the situation is similarly rosy on the continent too, where Juve sit top of their Champions League Group H, albeit on goal difference, with Sevilla currently in second place.

      Deadly Dybala

      From opening his Champions League tally for the season on Tuesday against Dinamo Zagreb to netting his first league goal of 2016/17 against Empoli on Sunday, it’s been quite a week for a certain Paulo Dybala.

      If his strike in Croatia caught the headlines for its sheer beauty, hurtling into the net from all of 30 yards out, yesterday’s was a goal of utmost importance, breaking the deadlock after 65 minutes of his side knocking on the Azzurri’s door to no avail.

      Having built up a reputation for hitting match-winners last term, Bianconeri supporters will be delighted to see La Joya back to scoring not merely goals but crucial ones at that.

      Gonzalo the goal machine

      Two goals in three minutes yesterday meant that Gonzalo Higuain would likely be on the lips of anyone of a Bianconeri persuasion both before and after full-time in Tuscany.

      Pipita has taken his tally now to seven strikes for the season in all competitions and Sunday’s showing was the latest demonstration of how and why.

      Quite simply, Gonzalo is capable of scoring from anywhere, whether it be blasting with his left foot into the bottom corner or cleverly capitalising on a defensive error before showing neat close control to dance around the keeper and poke home.

      In Higuain, Juve have someone who guarantees goals – the most precious asset in football and one which will stand the side in excellent stead for the campaign.

      Welcome back, Sturaro!

      Adding to the feel good factor of yesterday’s win was the sight of Stefano Sturaro making his maiden appearance of 2016/17 upon returning from injury.

      Having been eased back into action via an outing with the Primavera in September, Sturaro will be pleased to now have approximately 10 minutes under his belt for the first-team, as will all Bianconeri supporters who have missed the swashbuckling central midfield man over the last few months.

      Promising Pjaca

      Marko Pjaca’s classy cameo appearances off the bench have been commonplace since his arrival in the summer from Dinamo Zagreb and yesterday’s at Empoli was no different.

      Entering the action in the 73rd minute, the versatile forward very nearly added extra gloss to Juve’s victory with two skillfully crafted shots on goal and was a constant menace down the visitors’ left side, weaving in and out of the Azzurri’s rearguard members.

      Having impressed seven times as a substitute so far this campaign, supporters will be excited about the prospect of seeing the prodigious talent potentially starting matches as the season develops.

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