Milan vs Juventus: Talking Points
Saturday night was quite simply the night of Gonzalo Higuain. Pipita took his Serie A goal tally to 100 and then 101 with a brilliant brace in arguably Juventus’ biggest league game of the season so far.
If his return of 101 strikes in 153 Serie A appearances is impressive enough, Higuain also became only the second player over the last 20 years to reach the 100-goal mark in two of Europe’s top five leagues. The other man to achieve that was Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Furthermore, this was the Argentine forward’s 24th brace in Italy’s top flight and the 27th time that he has scored more than once in a single Serie A match.
With important matches on the horizon both in Italy and Europe, Pipita looks to be hitting his best form of the season so far at a crucial time for the Bianconeri.
2. GOALSCORING STREAK CONTINUES
The Bianconeri’s free-scoring start to the season has been well reported and on Saturday they made it 40 Serie A games in a row in which they have found the target.
Incidentally, the last time that they failed to find the net was in last year’s league defeat to Milan at the San Siro.
For the record, Juventus now have 33 goals in the first 11 Serie A fixtures of 2017/18. That’s an average of exactly three strikes per game. Prolific.
3. CLEAN SHEET SATISFACTION
At both ends of the field, Saturday was a highly satisfactory night for Massimiliano Allegri’s men, who managed to limit the hosts’ chances throughout and dug deep when it mattered most.
Daniele Rugani’s last-ditch block on Hakan Calhanoglu’s goalbound shot after Gianluigi Buffon had deflected Nikola Kalinic’s effort onto the crossbar was a confidence-boosting moment for the defence, as they went on to claim a first clean sheet away from home this season and the first one overall since the end of September.
4. JUVE LETHAL DOWN THE LEFT
Looking at the way Juventus launched their attacks last night, a staggering 47.5% of them came down the left side, with 30% down the right and 22.5% through the centre.
Kwadwo Asamoah, who played 71 minutes at left back, put in a solid performance both defensively and offensively. The Ghanaian it was who initiated the attack that led to Pipita’s second goal of the game:
5. OCTOBER UPTURN
Drawing away to Atalanta and losing at home to Lazio, the month of October did not start as planned, but the response from Allegri’s men could not have been better in recent weeks.
Saturday’s was Juve’s fourth straight win in all competitions, scoring an extraordinary 14 goals in the process.
Now the Bianconeri will be keen to end the month on a high when they take on Sporting Clube de Portugal in Tuesday’s crucial Champions League Group D game in Lisbon.
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