Juventus host Napoli at the Allianz Stadium on Friday night in Serie A. The Old Lady sit second in the table, a full nine points above the defending Scudetto winners. Walter Mazzarri’s side are unbeaten in four fixtures vs Juve with three wins and a draw.
Juventus are having a strong season with no European commitments. They have so far played 14 Serie A matches with just one defeat (10 wins and three draws). The only loss was 4-2 at Sassuolo in September due to a couple of goalkeeping errors. They bounced back with six successive clean sheets with four 1-0 wins during that streak.
A fine 1-0 win at AC Milan preceded the same scoreline at home to Verona and away at Fiorentina. A 2-1 win at home to Cagliari followed before a 1-1 home draw with Inter Milan despite putting up just 0.44 xG. Their last match saw a 94th-minute winner at Monza in a 2-1 success. The Old Lady produced 2.60 xG and dominated the clash.
Juventus Team News
Coach Max Allegri is without the banned Paul Pogba and Nicolo Fagioli due to off-field offences. Wide man Timothy Weah is out with a thigh injury and wingback Mattia De Sciglio is still out after a serious knee injury.
Danilo is expected to replace Alex Sandro on the left of the back three with Daniele Rugani benched. Hans Caviglia may continue in the heart of the midfield in preference to Manuel Locatelli. Federico Chiesa is fit and will play as part of the front two in the 3-5-2 formation.
Right now, Juve have a winning mentality and are totally fresh and focused on Serie A.
They will host Napoli and look to win the match. A draw is not a disaster, and it will be a pragmatic approach from Allegri for this match.
Napoli’s title defence has been a bit of a nightmare so far. Rudi Garcia was sacked after a tough start to the season which saw home defeats to Lazio and Fiorentina in the first eight rounds of Serie A as well as at home to Real Madrid in the Champions League. Despite briefly improving, a run of one win in four matches including a 1-0 home loss to Empoli saw the coach sacked.
Walter Mazzarri made an instant impact as his first match saw a 2-1 win at Atalanta. However, a 4-2 loss away to Real Madrid followed (20 shots and 2.87 xG conceded) before a humiliating 3-0 home loss to Inter Milan last weekend. Napoli allowed 2.69 xG in the loss and produced just 0.57 xG themselves.
Napoli Team News
Walter Mazzarri is without starting left-back Mario Rui for this match. Fellow left back Mathías Olivera is out for another month so there is a real problem. Veteran Juan Jesus and youngster Natan have each started in the last two weeks and struggled in that position.
Key striker Victor Osimhen is expected to start once again in preference to Giacomo Raspadori. He was ineffective against Inter Milan in his first start after injury. Juan Jesus could come in at centre-back and Piotr Zielinski may be recalled in central midfield for this one.
Napoli sit 11 points off the Serie A summit and need a win here. They may see a point as a good result in the top four battle.
Mazzarri’s side are leaking chances for fun (5.56 xG in the last two matches) and they need to focus on tightening up defensively.
Juve have lost just once in 14 Serie A matches this season
Juventus’ last 5 wins in Serie A have all been by a one-goal margin
Napoli are unbeaten in four matches vs Juventus (WDWW)
Napoli have lost 3 of their last 4 matches (all competitions)
Napoli have lost just 1 of 10 games on the road this season (won 7, drew 2)
This match isn’t easy to call due to Napoli’s strong away form and record against Juventus. Both sides should score but picking a winner is a tough task.
Best Bet: Both Teams to Score at 1.74
Alternative Bet: Napoli win/draw double chance at 1.60
Goalscorer Tip: Victor Osimhen to score anytime at 2.65