Juventus vs Genoa Serie A LIVE Football Score 5 Dec 2021
Stranded outside the European places approaching the season’s halfway stage, Juventus face a must-win encounter with lowly Genoa on Sunday evening.
After the Bianconeri enjoyed some brief respite from their Serie A travails with a win in over rock-bottom Salernitana in midweek, they will expect to back that up with maximum points against the division’s 18th-placed side.
Despite picking up their fourth away win of the domestic campaign, thanks to goals from underperforming strikers Paulo Dybala and Alvaro Morata on Tuesday evening, Juventus remain in seventh spot in the standings – seven points adrift of Atalanta, who currently occupy the final Champions League place.
While much time remains to find their feet – and given the intense schedule this month, Juve could feasibly be back in contention before the end of the year – concerns continue to linger about their progress since the second coming of Max Allegri this summer.
A week in which the Turin giants lost at home and abroad – heavily to Chelsea, then narrowly to Atalanta – preceded a December fixture list which has fallen kindly for Allegri’s men, as they now encounter several of the bottom five in a series of games leading up to the winter break.
The second comes on home soil this weekend, against opponents they have previously beaten on three successive occasions by the same 3-1 scoreline. Indeed, since 1992, Genoa have won only four times in the teams’ 35 top-flight encounters, with the Ligurian outfit’s last away win in this fixture coming back in January 1991.
Therefore, failure would be unthinkable for Juventus this weekend, before they take care of Champions League formalities – with progress already assured – and plan a potential charge up the standings
Following a winless start under his command, Andriy Shevchenko’s Genoa side remain mired in Serie A’s bottom three and are still searching for a first victory since September.
An awful first half of the campaign has seen little sign of improvement after the dismissal of former boss Davide Ballardini, and the Grifone have failed to even score in Shevchenko’s first three matches.
Their 3-0 defeat at the hands of the manager’s beloved Milan – courtesy of Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s 10th-minute opener and a Junior Messias brace – was a fourth from seven home games this term, and Genoa remain without a win at their Marassi headquarters.
Before they return there for the first Derby della Lanterna of the season next Friday evening, they must first hope to upset the odds and end a run of draws in each of their last three away trips, with an improbable win at the Allianz Stadium.
Even given Juve’s recent woes, the Grifone faithful will surely not expect such a turn of events, as they brace themselves for another relegation dogfight – and not for the first time in recent years.
Having been forced to take a depleted squad to Salerno in midweek due to the absence of several first team players, Max Allegri will be pleased to have both Weston McKennie and Mattia De Sciglio available once again.
However, Federico Chiesa – who sustained a thigh injury against Atalanta which will keep him sidelined until 2022 – Aaron Ramsey and Danilo will again be absent for Sunday’s game.
After being dropped for Moise Kean on Tuesday, struggling striker Alvaro Morata’s third league goal could help him regain his place up front, where he would join Paulo Dybala, who has scored seven goals and provided two assists against Genoa in Serie A – including three goal involvements in his last three meetings with the Grifone.
The visitors, meanwhile, will add two midfielders to their long injury list this weekend, as Azzurrini starlet Nicolo Rovella and former Juve man Stefano Sturaro were both ruled out of the trip to Turin.
While Rovella suffered a quad injury against Milan, which may see him out of commission for the next few weeks, Sturaro’s hamstring problem should be quicker to heal.
They join Nikola Maksimovic, Mohamed Fares, Yayah Kallon, Mattia Destro, captain and top scorer Domenico Criscito and Felipe Caicedo on the sidelines for Andriy Shevchenko’s squad, as the new boss prepares to reunite Caleb Ekuban and Flavio Bianchi up front in a 3-5-2 formation, despite the pair’s worrying lack of goals. Wily veteran Goran Pandev remains an attacking option from the bench.