Morata vs Allegri
Alvaro Morata was out to prove something to someone on Sunday night, that’s for sure. The Spaniard began proceedings like a bull in a china shop, relentlessly charging at any Genoa player who dared to touch the ball in their own third.
His persistent hassling in the opening exchanges set the tone for Juve as Genoa were suffocated for the vast majority of the contest. Morata would joint-lead Juventus with 25 total pressures (alongside the dogged Bentancur) and his nine successful pressures led all Bianconeri players.
The striker’s intensity out of possession was matched by a slick performance with the ball. While he played with his back to goal for the most part, Morata was aided by the quality of service into him. His feet were found as opposed to his chest or head, and the multitude of runners he had in close proximity made life so much easier. The Spaniard could combine with ease.
Unfortunately, this slickness couldn’t translate into final third productivity. Morata accumulated a team-high 0.9 xG from just three shots – indicating the quality of the chances – but failed to get on the scoresheet. Eventually, he cut a frustrated figure and his frustrations boiled over as he was booked for dissent towards the referee.
An angered Allegri brought him off, once again not willing to risk playing with ten men, and the pair exchanged words as Morata headed towards the bench.
“You gave away a foul, you have to shut up,” Allegri told his disgruntled striker, to which Morata replied: “What have I done?”
However, it was just a heated discussion in the moment. Nothing more. Post-match, Allegri said that his striker had played a good game and he was frustrated because he didn’t plan on bringing Morata off.
For much of the season, we’ve seen an Alvaro Morata who’s barely had a sniff of the opposition goal. On Sunday night, it was the complete opposite. He sniffed away like a middle-aged man with a cold. I’m not sure which iteration I prefer: the anonymous or infuriatingly wasteful Spaniard.