Atalanta vs Juventus
Third plays fourth this weekend when Juventus travel to Bergamo to take on fast shooters Atalanta in a game both teams need to win to cement a top-four place.
Only a single point separates the two clubs and that gives La Dea an added incentive against the reigning Scudetto holders, who they could leapfrog with a victory. With the 2021 Serie A title slipping from the Old Lady’s grasp she is now looking over her shoulder where Napoli is lurking in fifth place and just three points further back.
Atalanta and Juventus will meet in the Coppa Italia final in May, but for now there is serious league business to take care of.
Atalanta shooting for the Champions League
Gian Piero Gasperini’s Atalanta are homing in on a Champions League 2021/22 spot, with three wins on the bounce they sit in fourth place and are the league’s top scorers with 71 goals. While there is little breathing space La Dea has some real momentum, losing just three of the last 14 games, two against Real Madrid in the Champions League and the other against Serie A champions-elect Inter Milan.
Duvan Zapata was on target twice in Atalanta’s victory over Fiorentina last week, taking his season tally to 13 while the classy Josip Ilicic converted a penalty to win a five-goal thriller. Zapata’s strike partner Luis Muriel has already equalled his 2019/20 tally with 18 goals and he’s attracted the attention of Inter boss Antonio Conte.
Wing back Robin Gosens is another sought after player. He has great positional sense in defence and he carries a real threat going forward, weighing in with nine goals and five assists, and he’s being monitored by Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola. That his players are so widely admired is testimony to Gasperini’s coaching and managerial skills and, while may lose one or two in the summer, he can count on their high quality output until then.
Ilicic could play a key role; the Slovenian forward has made eight assists this campaign and he could be the man to unlock the Bianconeri defence.
Juventus in unchartered territory
The very latest Serie A 2021 betting odds have the Old Lady out in the cold at SBOTOP
odds of 29.00 to overhaul Inter’s lead. It looks like they’ve left it too late despite a 3-1 win over Genoa last week making it back to back wins.
Andrea Pirlo’s side is a massive 12 points adrift of the top spot and are closer to seventh-placed Roma who are eight points behind. Cristiano Ronaldo has 25 goals and is in the hunt for the Capocannoniere but this could be his last season in Turin, and he might fancy a move back to La Liga.
It’s difficult to put a finger on where Juventus have gone wrong, they have quality running through the team but have stalled at some of the big moments and are maybe a little light upfront. Federico Chiesa is showing some good signs with seven goals and seven assists, while former Atalanta youth player Dejan Kulusevski has been pushing for a start and Paulo Dybala was on target in Juve’s 2-1 win over Napoli. But none of those three are as prolific as La Dea’s front two.
Rodrigo Bentancur remains a class act in midfield but the defence will miss Leonardo Bonucci, out injured, and without a clean sheet in seven games that is a concern.
Atalanta have had very little joy in their meetings with Juventus. Over the past 47 games, spanning 28 seasons, they have won only three times, drawing 12 and losing 32. The last two meetings, however, both finished in a draw and both in Turin, 2-2 at the end of the 2019/20 season and 1-1 in this campaign, in December, as Remo Freuler equalised Chiesa’s strike.
|Atalanta vs Juventus||Atalanta Asian Handicap 0.00 @ 1.86|
|April 18, 21:00 (GMT+8)|
At odds of 2.43 Atalanta are the marginal favourites to win this clash, while I Bianconeri is at 2.70 and the draw is a decent shout at odds of 3.45.
Juve’s Serie A 2021 results simply haven’t been good enough to sustain a challenge for a record tenth consecutive Scudetto and that will hurt Bianconeri fans. What’s more they are in serious danger of missing out on a Champions League place. Defeat in Bergamo could leave them in fifth and with time running out that is a precarious position to be in.
When these two teams meet in the Coppa Italia final it will be a great day for both sets of fans, but this match is arguably just as important.
|A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR () BETS ARE WORTH:|
|= €20 (Highly confident)||= €10 (CONFIDENT)||= €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)|
Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.
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