Juventus brought their B game at best in the midweek bout versus Parma, but it proved to still be enough to down the lowly opponent thanks to some unlikely contributors in the stat-sheet. After a crazy start of the week, the Bianconeri took advantage of Milan’s slip-up, re-engulfing them in the Champions League race while they wait for Thursday’s results.
Alex Sandro (8 points): somehow, the defense contributed to all three goals, both in scoring and assists. The Brazilian left-back bagged an opportunistic brace, first wiggling free in the middle of the box on a corner kick and perfectly firing it home, then pouncing on a cross that passed untouched through the middle on a great back door cut. Matthijs De Ligt hit the net with a thumping header and also set up the initial goal, while, in terms of performance, Juan Cuadrado was the most influential as he motored up and down the flank at will, creating countless chances. He eventually took home two assists. The goal conceded was rather fluky, a terrific free-kick by Gaston Brugman, as De Ligt and Leonardo Bonucci smothered Graziano Pellè and the other Parma attackers, while Gianluigi Buffon provided the usual sure hands when necessary. Danilo made his presence felt with some dynamism in both phases.
Paulo Dybala: glimpses of the true Joya in this one, as he managed to unleash few mazing runs and looked very lively and twitchy in his movements. Moreover, he served as a major reference point for the offense, dishing some interesting balls to his teammates. He just missed the mark on an early shot from outside the box where he could have done better given his class. It was instead a more frustrating day for Cristiano Ronaldo, who had just one or two half-chances and could not make the most of them.
Arthur: it was not a particularly noteworthy performance for the three starting midfielders, as the back-line powered the team scoring-wise and the two strikers carried most of the offense. The Brazilian international, Rodrigo Bentancur and Weston McKennie were limited to complementary roles, and those coming off the bench did not pull their weight as the game had already been decided. The former Barcelona man, whose distribution was nothing special and flurry of moves at times rather pointless, gets the nod because of a goal-line clearance while patrolling the near post a corner kick, denying the equalizer to the opponents in the middle of the second half.
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