Posts Tagged ‘coppa italia’
May 18, 2012 by Jeremy Lim | Italian Football Editor
No one really cares about where the Coppa Italia goes so long as the Scudetto is up for grabs. That has been the sad reality of recent edition as Italy’s domestic cup competition plays second-fiddle to its league counterpart, as is common place in so many other European football landscapes. Not this season, however.
May 1, 2012 by Peter Galindo
As April turns to May, a mammoth showdown in Rome is set. On May 20th, it’ll be Juventus facing off against Napoli at the Stadio Olimpico in what should be a compelling match. The Bianconeri had to go to extra time with AC Milan at the Juventus Stadium but advanced 4-3 on aggregate, while Siena fought hard in both legs, but fell to Napoli 3-2 over both games.
March 22, 2012 by Matteo Roberts
Having finished the past two seasons in 7th place, Juventus’ 2011-12 campaign was greeted with humble expectations. With a new stadium and a new coach in Antonio Conte, the Agnelli family was ready to bring back the winning mentality to the club. The arrival of Conte brought a new playing philosophy which focused on possession, pressing and high octane football, as Del Neri’s 4-4-2 was replaced by (what some refer to as) a 4-2-4. The beginning of the year saw the likes of Zdeněk Grygera, Felipe Melo, Mohammed Sissoko and Alberto Aquilani leave Torino, as the starting 11 was totally revamped to fit Conte’s system thanks to some key signings by Director General Giuseppe Marotta. The right-back position, previously occupied by Grygera (and at times a shaky 19 year old Frederik Sørensen with the occasional Marco Motta appearance), was solidified by signing the hard working Stephan Lichtsteiner from Lazio. Fan outcast and former Bidone D’oro winner (given to the worst player in the Serie A) Felipe Melo was replaced by the more versatile and temperamentally stable Arturo Vidal. However, without a doubt, the most impressive signing of the summer was the free transfer of AC Milan playmaker Andrea Pirlo, who has made sure that Aquilani will be quickly forgotten at the Old Lady. The World Cup winner has been orchestrating virtually every attacking move and is the beating heart of this revamped Juventus side. The right-back position now presents a counterattacking option, as Lichtsteiner offers pace down the right flank, while Vidal has become the modern holding midfielder that many expected Melo to be, the perfect foil for the regista Pirlo. Whether playing the 4-2-4 or 4-3-3 (which includes fan favorite Claudio Marchisio), the Juventus midfield has arguably become one of the best in Europe and has proved to be the main reason for their success.