Juve-Atalanta Talking Points
By beating Atalanta in Wednesday’s semi-final second leg at Allianz Stadium, the Bianconeri booked their place in a fourth straight Coppa Italia final, equaling the record set by Roma and Inter between 2005 and 2008.
Juve now hold the record outright for number of finals reached: 18 in their history. Massimiliano Allegri’s men have won 12 of those and will be looking to make it a happy 13 when the showpiece event arrives in May.
PJANIC ON POINT FROM PENALTY SPOT
Miralem Pjanic it was who rubberstamped the victory with a 75th-minute penalty following a foul on Blaise Matuidi in the box.
This was the Bosnian’s second success from the spot for Juventus and on both occasions, Atalanta have been on the receiving end.
Pjanic has a knack of netting past Atalanta in the Coppa Italia, having scored three goals in four matches in the competition against the Nerazzurri.
COPPA CLEAN SHEETS CONTINUE
Genoa, Torino, Atalanta home and away. In four Coppa Italia fixtures this term, the Bianconeri are yet to concede a single goal.
Juve rode their luck with Alejandro Gomez striking the post in the second half, but they will not be worrying about that too much as their impressive shutout streak remains intact.
Including last year’s final win over Lazio, the Bianconeri have now kept five straight Coppa Italia clean sheets, equaling their record in the competition (1964-65).
MANDZUKIC’S MATCH IN THE MIDDLE
With Gonzalo Higuain rested as the Argentine returns from the knock he sustained against Torino, Mario Mandzukic was the man tasked with leading the line against Atalanta, flanked by Brazilian duo, Douglas Costa and Alex Sandro.
You can always count on 100% work-rate from the bruising Croatian forward, who won eight 50-50s and five aerial duels against notoriously physically tough opponents.
In short, this was always going to be a battle and, once more, Super Mario was up to it.
ALREADY IN ROME THIS WEEKEND
Juventus will be playing their very next match at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome – the venue for the Coppa Italia final – this Saturday when they take on Lazio in Serie A (kick-off at 18.00 CET).