Juventus-Milan Preview: The Opposite Game

Milan should be grateful to face Juventus at this stage in the season, before they have found their form. Meanwhile, on the opposite side, Juventus cannot be happy about finding a Milan side that is very confident and in form. Milan have the consistency of a manager and many players continuing a project, whereas Juventus have a new (recycled) manager and lost their poster boy for character deficit, and don't even seem to know what to do with their incredibly expensive squad. Juventus actually won their midweek Champions League match against Malmö, while Milan lost as they were away to Liverpool midweek, but Milan's loss was actually a more impressive performance against a significantly more difficult team to a team that has actually won the Champions League. Facing off in Turin on Sunday will be like playing the opposite game.

Tomori scored his first goal vs. Juve, will he do it again?

Allegri is a highly rated manager whom Juventus hired back after taking a giant step backward under Pirlo last season. Yet after his first poor result, he tried to blame the fact that he did not know how to use five subs. Hopefully he's figured out by now that Juventus' problems run much deeper than five subs instead of three, like when he managed before. Their obsession with "winning is the only thing" has left them with a bunch of expensive players and no real project to speak of. Allegri's influence should help, but will he be able to turn the team around in time for them to win anything this year? Or even win this match?

Juventus are 0-1-2 in the league, having gained only a single point in their first three Serie A match days. They did, however, beat last season's fourth place Swedish team 3-0 midweek, the team that was in pot four in their Champions League group. Juve fans celebrated the win as if they had won a Champion's League final, but everyone knows that Juventus never win Champions League finals. But to be fair, Juventus barely scraped through to a fourth place finish in Serie A last season, so maybe the matchup was a little more fair than their draw would indicate.

Desperation... even Chiellini reportedly said Juve are not a team

For the midweek game, Allegri lined up: Szczesny; Danilo, Bonucci, de Ligt, Alex Sandro, Cuadrado, Bentancur, Locatelli, Rabiot; Dybala, Morata. Juve will be without Kaio Jorge and Arthur to injury, with De Sciglio and Bernardeschi doubtful due to fitness issues as well. Allegri is also missing a sense of teamwork and a goalkeeper with some seriously poor form. Szczesny is a good keeper, but having a few poor performances and the ensuing fan abuse is a difficult mental cycle to break. Or at least Milan can hope.

Pioli has some players missing and doubtful as well. Krunić and Bakayoko are still out with their respective injuries, and Calabria suffered an injury in training on Friday and will miss this one as well. Messias has still been doing personalized training and has yet to be called up, while Plizzari has not been called up for the last few matches, either. The big misses, though, are the big guys up front. Giroud has been having back problems and will miss this one. Likewise, Ibrahimović is out due to the swelling in his Acchilles tendon. He expressed this week that he is going to listen to his body this season, and even hired his own person to oversee his injuries and fitness.

The opposite game

Juventus-Milan is always a big match. Playing in Turin means that our players will have to feed off of the negative energy of their fans rather than the support of our own fans, but hopefully our young players will be getting used to that soon, especially after this past Wednesday's away match. After Milan handed Juventus a sound 3-0 defeat in Turin last May, with fantastic goals from Brahim Díaz, Rebić, and Tomori to help Milan reach second place and end Juventus' chances for anything above fourth, the consistency of our project gives Milan an edge in this one. On paper, the midweek fixtures would give a slight advantage of momentum to Juve with a win, but Milan's loss was actually a more impressive performance, so mentality should still be strong. Obviously, anything can happen in 90 minutes. But despite Juve's wealth of players and home advantage, Milan's mentality and consistency make this one an opposite game.

This post inspired by the music of Måneskin's "Zitti e Buoni"

Serie A Week 4
Juventus vs. Milan
Sunday, September 19 • 20:45 CEST (2:45pm EDT)
This match will be shown LIVE on CBS Sports Network in the U.S.
or can be streamed LIVE on Paramount+

Juventus-Milan Preview: The Opposite Game Juventus-Milan Preview: The Opposite Game Reviewed by Elaine on 5:27 AM Rating: 5
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