Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Juve clash at the end of the season, Inter second in Serie A

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Juventus
Argentine Juventus striker Gonzalo Higuain (L) vies for the ball with English AS Roma defender Chris Smalling during the Italian Serie A soccer match Juventus vs Roma on August 1, 20-20 at the Allianz stadium in Turin. (Photo by Isabella BONOTTO / AFP)

Juventus crashed into their second straight loss since sealing a ninth consecutive Serie A title, falling 3-1 at home against Roma in their last game of the season on Saturday, days before their League campaign resumes. of Champions.

Inter Milan took second place with a 2-0 victory over their direct rivals Atalanta in Bergamo, ending the season just one point behind Juventus.

Juventus are looking into their last 16 home games against Lyon next Friday, where Maurizio Sarri’s team needs to reverse a 1-0 first-leg deficit.

Cristiano Ronaldo rested for the final match with nothing to play against Roma in fifth place.

Argentine Gonzalo Higuaín led the Juventus attack after six minutes at the Allianz stadium.

But Diego Perotti inspired a Rome counterattack that created Nikola Kalinic to nod on the equalizer after 23 minutes.

A penalty from Perotti before the break and a second six minutes in the second half sentenced Juventus to their third loss in four games.

The team then lifted the trophy when they celebrated winning the “Scudetto” for the 36th time in an empty Allianz stadium.

“There is still a big gap with Juventus,” said Inter coach Antonio Conte, whose team won a three-team battle for second place.

“Juve has a much better structure on and off the field. Now the others are trying to catch up. We must be smart to understand how to do this, not to go from depression to excessive euphoria. “

Danilo D’Ambrosio nodded at Inter’s first goal after just a minute in Bergamo with Ashley Young doubling his lead after 20 minutes with an impressive curly shot to boost confidence before the next Europa League draw week against Getafe.

Atalanta’s 17-game unbeaten streak in the league dating back to January 20 ended.

But coach Gian Piero Gasperini said it was the best preparation for his Champions League quarterfinals against Paris Saint-Germain.

“This game with Inter gave us a good wake-up call, it was the best thing that could have happened to us,” said Gasperini.

“It was the best game we could find in anticipation of the Champions League.

“In the last few weeks we have played more confident football, we have removed the throttle control a bit, but tonight we have understood that you cannot play like this against this type of team, and it will be the same with PSG.”

– Registration of stationary matches –

Lazio finished fourth, equal in points with Atalanta, having been pushing for the title just one point behind Juventus when the season resumed on June 20.

Simone Inzaghi’s team fell 3-1 to Napoli, but forward Ciro Immobile scored his 36th goal of the season to match the record for most goals in a Serie A campaign.

The 30-year-old Italian international tapped after 22 minutes to match Argentina striker Higuain’s record of 36 goals while playing for Napoli in the 2015-16 season.

Immobile will also win the European Golden Shoe for the top scorer on the continent in this period, having surpassed Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski’s 34th figure midweek.

Napoli prepared for their last Champions League 16 return leg over Barcelona with a victory, but lost to captain Lorenzo Insigne, who scored on the night, through injury.

At San Siro, Zlatan Ibrahimovic missed a penalty kick, but scored his tenth league goal since January when AC Milan finished sixth with a 3-0 victory over Cagliari.

The season concludes on Sunday with Lecce and Genoa playing Parma and Hellas Verona respectively, hoping to avoid joining Brescia and SPAL in Serie B.

Genoa, in 17th place, is only one point ahead of Lecce, who occupies the final relegation position.

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