23 September 2023
Juventus suffered their first defeat of season 2023/24 with a 4-2 defeat at Sassuolo. The Bianconeri had rallied to draw level twice, first through an own goal by Matias Vina in the opening half and Federico Chiesa on 78 minutes in the second half.
However, the home side restored their lead on 82 minutes and Federico Gatti’s own-goal in the last minute of stoppage time completed the scoring in favour of Sassuolo.
The rain that began to fall just before kick-off at the Mapei Stadium played its part in the game’s opening goal. With 12 minutes on the clock a dipping, swerving drive from distance from Armand Laurienté deceived Wojciech Szczesny, with the ball slipping through the goalkeeper's gloves into the net.
The Bianconeri responded and were level inside 10 minutes. Federico Chiesa created the danger when he whipped in a delivery that the home defence could not cope with. Matias Vina turned the ball into his own net from close range under pressure from Weston McKennie.
Just before the half hour, Manuel Locatelli came close from the edge of the area. Moments later Federico Gatti tried to set up Danilo for a tap-in following a well-worked free-kick but the captain just could not reach the ball played across the face of goal.
On 38’ Szczesny made amends for his earlier mistake with a prodigious save, at full stretch he palmed away a powerful header from Ruan Tressoldi. However, two minutes later the hosts restored their advantage, when Berardi swept the ball beyond Szczesny with a first-time shot at the edge of the box.
A Federico Chiesa free-kick that went just wide of target eight minutes into the second half showed Juve’s intention to draw level for the second time, and they did exactly that on 78’, with Chiesa eventually grabbing his goal. The number 7 lashed an unstoppable shot beyond Alessio Cragno after being set up by Nicolò Fagioli.
Before Chiesa’s equaliser, Laurienté and Dusan Vlahovic spurned gilt-edged chances with only the oppostion goalkeeper to beat - a sign that defences were not on top.
In fact, the game’s fifth goal came a mere four minutes after the Bianconeri had drawn level for the second time. Laurienté hit a similar shot to the one that had led to the game’s opener. This time Szczesny made the save, but Andrea Pinamonti was fastest to react to the rebound and placed his header into the unguarded net.
Juventus pushed forward in search of a third equaliser on the night but were almost caught out on the counter attack in stoppage time, when Gregoire Defrel struck the underside of the crossbar. However, there was to be one more goal, when Gatti placed the ball into his own net in the final minute of stoppages.
A home match against Lecce on Tuesday gives Juventus an immediate opportunity to redeem this their first setback of the new campaign.
SASSUOLO 4-2 JUVENTUS (HT: 2-1)
Scorers: 13′ Laurienté, 21′ Vina o.g., 41′ Berardi, 78′ Chiesa, 82′ Pinamonti, 90’+5′ Gatti o.g.
SASSUOLO: Cragno; Toljan, Erlic, Tressoldi (46′ Viti), Vina (90’+1′ Ferrari); Matheus Henrique, Boloca; Berardi, Bajrami (85′ Castillejo), Lauriente (85′ Pedersen); Pinamonti (85′ Defrel). Subs not used: Pegolo, Theiner, Missori, Racic, Mulattieri, Obiang, Ceide, Volpato, Thorstvedt. Coach: Dionisi.
JUVENTUS: Szczesny; Gatti, Bremer, Danilo; McKennie (60′ Weah), Miretti (46′ Fagioli), Locatelli (83′ Milik), Rabiot, Kostic (46′ Iling); Vlahovic (75′ Kean), Chiesa. Subs not used: Pinsoglio, Perin, Huijsen, Rugani, Cambiaso, Nicolussi Caviglia. Coach: Allegri.
Bookings: 36′ Rabiot, 51′ Boloca, 55′ Danilo, 58′ Berardi, 64′ Vina, 83′ Pinamonti