02 March 2023
Tuesday 11 April is the second of two appointments with history for Juventus Next Gen.
At the "Romeo Menti" at 20:30 CEST the Bianconeri play the second leg of the Coppa Italia Serie C final. Opponents Vicenza, a team already well known in Coach Massimo Brambilla's line-up as they were present in the group A, the same as the Next Gen.
In fact, the two teams have already faced each other three times between the league and cup this season. In group A, in Veneto, the hosts won, in Turin, Juventus did likewise. In the final first leg of the Coppa Italia Serie C, played at the Allianz Stadium on Thursday 2 March, Vicenza prevailed 1-2.
Now a new challenge, with everything to play for.
Before diving into the return match, let's retrace the extraordinary journey of the Bianconeri in the competition together.
THE BIANCONERI'S CUP RUN
LECCO 1-3 JUVENTUS NEXT GEN
Juventus' Coppa Italia Serie C started in Lecco.
At the Rigamonti-Ceppi Stadium the team coached by Massimo Brambilla went ahead after just 20 minutes through an own goal. More importantly, Marco Da Graca doubled the lead in the second half because the side from Lombardy pulled a goal back with twenty minutes to play. The home side threw players forward leaving space for the Next Gen and in the 83rd minute Samuel Iling-Junior grabbed a third and killer goal, which put the Next Gen in the pot for the next round.
FERALPISALÒ 2-5 JUVENTUS NEXT GEN
The biggest victory en route to the final came in the second round.
Just like last season, the round 2 ties was against FeralpiSalò. This time though the young Bianconeri had to travel to the picturesque setting of Lake Garda, but the outcome remained the same, thanks to an impressive start. Simone Iocolano struck first on 13 minutes, Mattia Compagnon added a second 10 minutes later. 23rd minute. Like Lecco in round 1, the hosts attempted to find a way back into the game twice in the first half. However, despite conceding twice, Next Gen still maintained the lead thanks to Giuseppe Verduci's effort, which made the score momentarily 3-1. The Bianconeri stepped up a gear in the second half and Alessandro Sersanti and Mirco Lipari netted a goal each to wrap up the scoring with an impressive 5-2 result.
Next Gen | Highlights Italian Cup | Feralpisalò - Juventus
SANGIULIANO CITY 0-1 JUVENTUS NEXT GEN
The match against Sangiuliano City in the round of 16 of the competition was without doubt the most challenging faced until then. And the narrow victory obtained by the Next Gen also confirmed it, as well as the analysis of the Juventus coach at the final whistle.
It was a difficult match, which was a struggle for many aspects. The most important thing today was getting through to the next round. We weren't able to play a clean game technically, but we managed to adapt to a dirtier game and even had some lucky breaks a couple of times. We take out of this reinforced character as well as qualification. Massimo Brambilla
A qualification that came thanks to Nicolò Cudrig, who became the eighth different scorer in the tournament for the Next Gen after just three games played.
PADOVA 1-2 JUVENTUS NEXT GEN
Contro i biancoscudati, di fatto, risultano decisivi ai fini del risultato finale tre minuti di gara. Tra il 52' e il 55' i bianconeri, infatti, vanno in gol prima con Cerri e poi con Sekulov chiudendo i conti già a inizio ripresa. Risulterà inutile la rete in pieno recupero di De Marchi.
Ancora una volta i marcatori sono diversi rispetto a quelli a segno nelle precedenti tre partite e diventano dieci. E saranno 13 al termine delle due partite valevoli per la semifinale (soltanto Huijsen ne segnerà due di reti, ma nella stessa partita).
Three minutes proved decisive for the result against the Biancoscudati. Between the 52nd and 55th minute the Bianconeri scored first through Leonardo Cerri and then through Nikola Sekulov. Ten minutes after start of the second half, the tie was as good as won. Padova's goal in stoppage time was nothing more than a consolation for the home team.
Once again two different names were added to the list of scorers, taking the total to ten. That number would increase further come the end of two-legged semi-finals.
The victory over Padova was undoubtedly the most important victory in the Coppa Italia Serie C run until then - not only because it allowed Juventus to book their place in the semi-final, but also because it Padova's defence of the trophy they had claimed the previous season.
Next Gen | Highlights Italian Cup | Padova - Juventus
THE TWO-LEGGED TIE WITH FOGGIA
And then it came down to the last (double) act before the final.
For the first time in the tournament, Next Gen played against a team from to another group. The semi-final against Foggia was also the first time the Bianconeri had faced the side from Puglia.
Foggia's form over the season had been similar to the Bianconeri's, consequently a tight contest was expected over the two matches. And that's exactly how it turned out.
In the first leg, Next Gen made the long trip south and found themselves trailing for the first time in the tournament. but Fabrizio Poli became the team's 11th scorer. The Rossoneri, however, regained the lead, which allowed the home side to close the first of the two legs with a narrow advantage.
The second leg was played at the Giuseppe Moccagatta stadium in Alessandria and became a best night to remember for all those involved, especially Dean Huijsen.
Sometimes there is no need for words, especially when images can tell the story. Sit back and watch.
Next Gen | Highlights Coppa Italia | Juventus - Foggia
THE FIRST LEG OF THE FINAL
In the fantastic setting of the Allianz Stadium for the second time this season after the championship match against Mantova on the occasion of Next Gen Day, the Bianconeri faced Vicenza in the first act of the final of the Coppa Italia Serie C. Massimo Brambilla put on a solid performance for the 21 thousand plus spectators that had filled the ground. It wasn't enough, however, as Vicenza won 2-1 with a goal in the match's closing stages, when it seemed as if a draw was on the cards.
It's definitely not over, though. There is still the second leg to play.
Uniti, fino alla fine!