28.10.2015 23:00 - in: Serie A S

      Sassuolo take spoils over ten-man Juve

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      Ten-man Juventus fail to overcome their numerical disadvantage following Giorgio Chiellini’s first-half dismissal, losing 1-0 to Sassuolo in Reggio Emilia

      Ten-man Juventus could not overcome their numerical disadvantage following Giorgio Chiellini’s first-half dismissal, as they fell to a fourth league reverse of the season by losing 1-0 to Sassuolo at the Mapei Stadium on Wednesday evening.

      Massimiliano Allegri’s men entered the match on the back of three consecutive clean sheets in all competitions, but they were unable to make it a fourth when Nicola Sansone bent a beautiful 20th minute free-kick into the top corner, leaving Gigi Buffon with no chance whatsoever of preventing his side from conceding a first goal in 375 minutes.

      On 39 minutes, matters worsened for the visitors when referee Andrea Gervasoni sent off Chiellini, leaving the ten men a mountain to climb as they attempted to overturn the result against a Sassuolo side unbeaten at home this term.

      Nevertheless, Juventus would go on to enjoy the better of the possession (69.8 per cent) and shots (10 to their hosts’ 4) after the break, Paul Pogba and Juan Cuadrado going closest to finding an equaliser.

      The Bianconeri were unable to maintain the same level of intensity for the remainder of the contest, however, as the Neroverdi stood firm to make sure of maximum points and record their first ever victory against the Old Lady.

      A cagey beginning to the match saw both sides struggle to create any chances of note until Sansone curled in a perfectly placed free-kick in the 20th minute.

      The goal presented Allegri’s men with the unenviable statistic of having conceded at the opposition’s first attempt in five out of their opening ten league games this campaign.

      Looking to make immediate amends to the setback, Paulo Dybala had a left-footed shot well blocked by the hosts’ backline before Pogba unleashed a ferocious effort from outside the box that had Sassuolo stopper Gianluca Pegolo at full stretch to tip the top corner-bound ball over the bar.

      However, in the 39th minute Juve were dealt a heavy blow when Chiellini received his marching orders for a second yellow card.

      Despite being burdened with the numerical disadvantage, Juventus came out positively in the second period, Pogba pouncing onto Mario Mandzukic’s layoff to fire inches wide of Pegolo’s post from the edge of the area.

      And the visitors continued to put their opponents under sustained pressure, winning corner after corner (a total of 11 across the full 90 minutes) before Cuadrado forced the 34-year-old keeper to tip his fierce right-footed drive around the upright.

      After seeing his charges lose the initiative, Eusebio Di Francesco responded by bringing on Gregoire Defrel for Sergio Floccari and the forward instantly posed a threat with a powerful run into the box, but Leonardi Bonucci did well to sniff out the danger.

      Likewise, Allegri made changes of his own in attack, substituting Mandzukic and Dybala for Alvaro Morata and ex-Neroverdi marksman Simone Zaza.

      The third player introduced in the contest’s latter stages, Hernanes, tried his luck with a long-range drive, but the Brazilian could not trouble Pegolo, who ended up having little to do as the hosts held on for a first ever win against the Bianconeri in their history.

      The Old Lady, meanwhile, will look to pick themselves up immediately from the disappointment of losing their fourth Serie A match of 2015/16 with an enormous encounter scheduled for Saturday evening when inter-city rivals Torino make the short trip across town to Juventus Stadium.


      Buffon, Barzagli, Bonucci, Chiellini, Alex Sandro, Sturaro, Lemina (Hernanes 83), Pogba, Cuadrado, Mandzukic (Morata 60), Dybala (Zaza 78)

      Unused substitutes: Neto, Audero, Rugani, Evra, Padoin, Khedira

      Coach: Allegri


      Pegolo, Vrsaljko, Cannavaro, Acerbi, Peluso, Missiroli, Magnanelli, Biondini (Duncan 71), Berardi (Laribi 80), Floccari (Defrel 70), Sansone

      Unused substitutes: Pomini, Longhi, Pellegrini, Falcinelli, Politano, Gazzola, Terranova, Floro Flores

      Coach: Di Francesco


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