Serie A strugglers Verona face the ultimate test when champions Juventus travel to face the unlikely 1984-85 league winners. The Bianconeri are in ominous mood and with questions asked of Max Allegri’s men, his side have got the better of rivals Napoli and Roma in recent weeks and notoriously hit top form at the turn of the year.
Where and when: Stadio Marc’Antonio Bentegodi – 30 December, kick-off 19:45
Where you can see Verona vs. Juventus: BT Sport, bet365 live streaming
Last time: Despite finishing bottom of the 2015-16 table, one of Verona’s five victories came against Juventus. Luca Toni was on the scoresheet in the 2-1 win.
Verona v Juventus Predictions and Preview
After the famous 3-0 victory on home soil against a beleaguered Milan side a fortnight ago, Verona were dealt a harsh dose of reality last weekend against Udinese. The Zebrette ruthlessly beat Fabio Pecchia’s men 4-0, and morale will need lifting ahead of the visit of the Scudetto holders. If the Gialloblu can start in the same vein as their special win, a 1-1 final score at 17/1 could prove good value for money.
Despite their lowly position and the winter break approaching, all is not lost for Verona. Four points separate themselves and 15th placed Cagliari and in Giampaolo Pazzini, Pecchia has a seasoned pro who knows how to put the ball in the back of the net against Juventus.
The former Milan and Inter striker will be supported by Alessio Cerci and the well-travelled wideman is 14/1 to score any time. Cerci is inconsistent – but unplayable on his day and will not shy away from taking the game to the opposition.
Following defeat against Sampdoria in mid-November, the Bianconeri have kept eight clean sheets in all competitions. A 3-0 result is 9/1.
Allegri has plenty of options at his disposal and winger Federico Bernardeschi will hope for a starting berth. Bernardeschi has seen his playing time limited this year but his talent is not in doubt.
Stunners against Spal and Olympiacos have served as a reminder and the starlet will be hungry to prove his worth. Playing from the right flank, the left footer is 17/1 to score last and this should be looked at closely particularly if he comes off the bench late against a tiring defence.
One to watch for Verona: Pazzini is the club’s top scorer with four goals and remains a threat in the air. The veteran forward is 11/1 to net first.
One to watch for Juventus: Miralem Pjanic is guaranteed to start at the base of midfield and is a dead ball specialist. The Bosnian is an appealing 13/1 to score any time.
Long shot: Verona currently sit in 19th in the table and need to take points from those in and around them, but with five goals in their last three games, are in reasonable goalscoring form. Both teams to strike, Verona to win – and an off day for the visitors is 35/1.