Thursday, January 6, 2011

Italian Serie A Round 18 - Juventus vs Parma - Review

Juventus' long unbeaten run in all competitions has come to an end after a disasterous 4-1 loss to Parma in Turin. A haunting two goals from Juventus loanee Giovinco proved to be the start Parma needed to go on and dominate the 10 man Bianconeri.

Juventus went into the match knowing that a wind would see them temporarily leapfrog Napoli and Lazio into second place two points behind league leaders and fierce rivals, Ac Milan. However things did not look promising from the start with striker Fabio Quagliarella going off injured within the first five minutes.

The early change saw Amauri enter the fray. After holding much of the initial possession Juventus recieved a huge blow, after Brazillian midfielder Felipe Melo was sent off following a kick to the head of Paci. The moment of stupidity saw Juventus down to 10 men, which certainly put pressure on their defence.

Although it was Juventus who would come close to scoring, having a goal disallowed. Del Piero lined up a free kick sending it on target, to the despair of the Parma goalkeeper who fumbled the ball allowing Chiellini to tap it in. However officials disallowed the goal, claiming that the ball was kicked out of Mirante's hands, which indeed it was.

Juventus continued to dominate midfield play with Pepe coming on to sure it up, for Del Piero. Although with the man down the susceptible Bianconeri were prone to the counter attack. Parma did just that, and in the 40th minute it payed dividend as a ball in from Zaccardo was directed on goal by Gobbi, a fumbled Storari save fell to Giovinco who slotted the ball into the roof of the net, putting the away side up at the break, much to the dismay of the crowd.

The second half continued much the same way as the end of the first half as Parma came out and attacked Juventus. The reward was immediate as yet again Giovinco found the back of the net against his parent club. Valiani did exceptionally well to keep the ball in play and deliver and excellent cross to Giovinco, who controlled well with his right and knocked the ball in on the half volley with his left. The Juventus defence left rue their poor performance.

A Juventus freekick on the edge of the area just minutes later almost saw Juventus pull one back. A Pepe shot hit the post to the relief of Mirante who was stuck to the spot. Although Juventus recieved a subsequent corener which saw replacement defender Legrottaglie head the ball home, putting Juventus only one goal behind with half an hour remaining.

Although it was short lived as straight after the subsequent kickoff Parma broke the Juventus defence. A charge into the box by Crespo, saw Chiellini take the legs from under him. The captain protested his innocence but a penalty was awarded. Crespo stepped up and slotted the ball into the bottom left corner, which saw Storari beaten for the third time.

Juventus morale was down and Parma were dominating the Old Lady. A change by Del Neri saw Sissoko replace the youngster Sorensen. The change was to bring nothing as Juventus continued to fail in their push for another goal. Krasic was quiet down the wing and besides a claim for a penalty really had no impact on the match.

Giovinco was substitued late on, the Juventus loanee was met with appreciation from the Juventus fans who have taken a liking to the youngster. Giovinco out of respect did not celebrate either of his two goals, although he did prove a point to his parent club.

Juventus failed to bridge the gap between them and the league leaders and that was capped off by a late goal from Palladino - also a former Juve man. The goal was the final kick of the match. Juventus for the first time this season conceeded four goals in one match, also ending their 18 run unbeaten streak.

Parma climb away from the relgation zone into 10th temporarily. While Juventus slip away from the league leaders.

Final Score:   Juventus 1      -         Parma 4
                      Legrottaglie 60         Giovinco 41
                                                        Giovinco 48
                                                        Crespo (pen) 62
                                                        Palladino 90

Man of the Match - Sebastian Giovinco (Parma)