Juventus
    03.02.2016 23:03 - in: Match report S

    Record-breaking Juve down Genoa

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    The Bianconeri set a new club record after securing their 13th straight Serie A victory with Wednesday’s 1-0 win over the Rossoblu at Juventus Stadium

    The Bianconeri’s monumental winning streak extended to 13 Serie A matches – setting a new club record – with Wednesday’s 1-0 victory over Genoa at Juventus Stadium.

    A first half, in which the hosts enjoyed more of the ball (60 per cent) but managed just a single shot on target, saw them break Genoa’s stern resistance on the half-hour mark courtesy of Juan Cuadrado’s trickery creating space for his shot, which cannoned in off centre-back Sebastian De Maio.

    The second period was not exactly one for the purist, with just five shots shared between the two sides. Massimiliano Allegri’s men were dealt a late blow in stoppage time when Simone Zaza received his marching orders for an ill-timed tackle on Armando Izzo, but they kept their focus until the final whistle to make sure of a result which keeps them hot on the heels of league leaders Napoli.

    In the early exchanges, Juve controlled possession, often probing for an opening in what was a well-marshalled Genoa rearguard.

    Indeed, the hosts were restricted to shots from outside the box, Paulo Dybala’s low left-footed drive and Paul Pogba’s whipped free-kick both sailing whiskers wide of Mattia Perin’s post.

    After withstanding these initial attacks, the visitors would start to launch a few forward forays of their own, Cristian Ansaldi sending in a couple of dangerous crosses to Leonardo Pavoletti, but the Rossoblu’s leading marksman was unable to trouble Gigi Buffon on both occasions.

    Just as Genoa were growing into the game, Juve struck the opener. Faced with breaking down a dogged defence, which had conceded just once in their last four fixtures, it would require something special to do just that.

    Cue Cuadrado, whose rapid turn of direction and pace outfoxed his marker before firing into the top corner via a deflection off De Maio.

    Having taken a deserved lead into the interval, the Bianconeri almost surrendered it within a minute of the restart when Alessio Cerci dispatched a ferocious drive in on goal that forced Buffon into a smart block.

    Immediately after substituting Alvaro Morata, Zaza had a gilt-edged opportunity to double his side’s advantage on 55 minutes. Racing onto the loose ball, the former Sassuolo striker found himself one-on-one with Perin but could only hit into the goalkeeper’s grateful embrace.

    Moments later, the 23-year-old stopper was relieved to watch Dybala’s menacing free-kick whizz past his upright, only just evading several team-mates who were well-positioned for what would have been a simple tap-in.

    In a second period notably lacking in goalmouth action, Juve looked to put the result beyond doubt in the closing quarter of an hour, Dybala turning on a sixpence in the penalty area, but his strike was well blocked in what represented further solid defensive work from the visitors.

    Ultimately, however, Gian Piero Gaspini’s men were unable to hurt the Bianconeri backline who coped well with their numerical disadvantage following Zaza’s stoppage-time dismissal and held firm for a crucial three points in their challenge for a fifth straight Scudetto title.

    JUVENTUS

    Buffon, Barzagli, Bonucci, Caceres (Rugani 63), Cuadrado, Padoin, Marchisio, Pogba, Evra (Alex Sandro 40), Morata (Zaza 54), Dybala

    Unused substitutes: Neto, Rubinho, Lichtsteiner, Lemina, Sturaro, Hernanes, Pereyra

    Coach: Allegri

     

    GENOA

    Perin, Ansaldi, De Maio, Izzo, Cerci (Suso 55), Ntcham (Capel 58), Pavoletti, Munoz, Rigoni, Dzemaili (Matavz 81), Gabriel Silva

    Unused substitutes: Lamanna, Burdisso, Marchese, Pandev, Lazovic, Fiamozzi, Tachtidis, Rincon, Laxalt

    Coach: Gasperini

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