Fans had flocked to the Allianz with high expectations for the first match of the season. After the summer makeover, two new faces in the starting line-up, Gleison Bremer, who partnered Leonardo Bonucci in the centre of defence, and Ángel Di María, in support of Dušan Vlahović in attack, and it was the two frontmen that did the damage in the first half to give Juve a two goal advantage at the break. And the front two linked up shortly after the interval for the third goal, which sealed the three points. Three goals scored, zero conceded - a confident debut from Massimiliano Allegri’s side.
DI MARIA DOES THE DAMAGE
The enthusiasm from the fans for this new season was almost immediately rewarded in the first minute when Alex Sandro broke in behind the Sassuolo defence. Penalty claims were waved away by the match official but the Bianconeri in that opening instant demonstrated their desire to exploit the flanks, and the tactic would eventually pay dividends.
After the cooling break at the midway point of the first period Juve hit with an incisiveness in attack that Sassuolo could not contain. Crosses from left and right peppered the opposition box until the delivery from Alex Sandro was dummied by Vlahović in the knowledge that Di María was lurking. The Argentine drove his volley into the ground, looping the ball into the net. El Fideo lapped up the applause - a debut goal at the Allianz Stadium after just 26 minutes as a Juve player.
Before that moment, however, it had been the visitors that had appeared more dangerous with three efforts in quick succession before the cooling break. First Domenico Berardi fired off target before his co-striker Gregoire Defrel tested Mattia Perin twice in as many minutes.
Once the breakthrough had been made Juventus looked eager to add a second. Twice in succession link up play between Di María and Danilo set up Vlahović, but the striker went just wide both times. The Bianconeri number nine would have the final say in the first half though. Fouled by Gian Marco Ferrari as he looked to turn inside the box, Vlahović picked himself up, dusted himself down and drilled the ball into the net for Juve’s second.
THE FRONT TWO COMBINE AGAIN
The tandem in attack crafted and converted the third goal of the game five minutes after the restart. Di María, a minute after almost tucking away his own second of the match, showed all his generosity by rolling the ball into the path of his strike partner. Dušan gratefully accepted and tucked home his double.
On the hour, the Allianz faithful welcomed the most recent club signing, Filip Kostić, and before the end of the match also Nicolò Rovella would make his Juve debut. Although Perin was called on to make another couple of saves there was never any serious risk of the visitors being allowed a way back into the contest. The Bianconeri saw out the the remainder of the match to receive a deserved ovation from the fans after an impressive solid start to the campaign.
JUVENTUS-SASSUOLO 3-0 (HT: 2-0)
SCORERS: Di María 26', Vlahović (pen) 43’, Vlahović 51’
Perin; Danilo, Bonucci, Bremer, Alex Sandro (61’ De Sciglio); Cuadrado (61’ Kostić), Zakaria, Locatelli (76’ Rovella), McKennie (76’ Soulè); Di María (66’ Miretti); Vlahovic.
Subs not used: Pinsoglio, Garofani, Rugani, Gatti, Fagioli, Da Graca.
Consigli; Muldur (7’ Toljan), Ayhan, Ferrari, Rogerio; Frattesi (80’ Ceide), Henrique, Thorsvedt (80’ Harroui); Berardi, Defrel (46’ Raspadori), Kyriakopoulos (59’ Pinamonti).
Subs not used: Pegolo, Russo, Marchizza, Alvarez, Obiang, Erlic, D'Andrea, Tressoldi.
ASSISTANTS: Di Vuolo, Di Gioia.
FOURTH OFFICIAL: Giua.
VAR: Guida, Muto.
BOOKINGS: 16’ Locatelli (J), 33’ Thorstvedt (S), 41’ Ferrari (S), 69’ Henrique (S).