Igor Tudor returns to Turin as his Hellas Verona side take on Juventus at the Allianz on Sunday night.
Serie A makes its return this weekend following a mini-international break and a hectic end to the January mercato, particularly in Bianconeri quarters.
Juve’s busy end to the window means Massimiliano Allegri’s side should look a little different this weekend with statement arrival Dusan Vlahovic in contention to make his first Bianconeri start. Denis Zakaria, too, could make his Bianconeri debut on Sunday.
The Old Lady haven’t tasted defeat in the league since November and their superb form has them within a point of Atalanta in fourth. However, Allegri’s men now embark on a tough run of fixtures that begins with Sunday’s bout.
Tudor’s Verona beat Juve 2-1 in the reverse fixture and their fine run of form has thrust them up to ninth in the table. The current Gialloblu isn’t too dissimilar from Ivan Juric’s giant-killing iteration and their high-octane, direct style could potentially upset the Bianconeri on Sunday.
Juventus vs Hellas Verona preview
It’s bound to be an enthralling tactical bout with fresh faces ready to herald a new dawn in Turin. Here’s our preview of Sunday’s Serie A fixture between Juventus and Hellas Verona.
How to Watch Juventus vs Hellas Verona
When is kick-off? Sunday 6 February
What time is kick-off? 19:45 (BST)
Where is it played? Allianz Stadium
TV channel/live stream? BT Sport 1 (UK), Paramount+ (US)
Referee? Luca Massimi
Juventus Team News
Juve may be without left-back Alex Sandro after the Brazilian tested positive for COVID-19 on January 31. Thus, Luca Pellegrini or Mattia De Sciglio could start in defence with Danilo potentially making his first Serie A start since November at right-back.
Manuel Locatelli is suspended meaning we could see Zakaria start from the outset. However, the Swiss international is more likely to appear off the bench with Arthur Melo, Adrien Rabiot and Weston McKennie possibilities to start in midfield.
The only fresh injury concern is Federico Bernardeschi, who is suffering from muscle fatigue, with Federico Chiesa a notable long-term absentee.
Vlahovic is expected to start.
Hellas Verona Team News
Tudor will be without the suspended Giovanni Simeone for Sunday’s game. The Argentine forward is enjoying a superb season in Verona and he scored twice in the reverse fixture back in October. Nikola Kalinic is expected to deputise up front with Kevin Lasagna an alternative option.
The visitors will also be without Polish centre-back Pawel Dawidowicz, while there are doubts over the availability of left-back – and Juventus loanee – Gianluca Frabotta.
Juventus vs Hellas Verona Predicted Lineups
Juventus: Szczesny; Danilo, De Ligt, Chiellini, Pellegrini; Cuadrado, Zakaria, Rabiot, McKennie; Dybala, Vlahovic.
Hellas Verona: Montipo; Ceccherini, Gunter, Casale; Faraoni, Ilic, Veloso, Lazovic; Barak, Caprari; Kalinic.
Juventus’ Recent Form
AC Milan 0-0 Juventus (23/01) – Serie A
Juventus 4-1 Sampdoria (18/01) – Coppa Italia
Juventus 2-0 Udinese (15/01) – Serie A
Inter Milan 2-1 (AET) Juventus (12/01) – Supercoppa Italiana
AS Roma 3-4 Juventus (09/01) – Serie A
Hellas Verona’s Recent Form
Hellas Verona 2-1 Bologna (21/01) – Serie A
Sassuolo 2-4 Hellas Verona (16/01) – Serie A
Hellas Verona 1-2 Salernitana (09/01) – Serie A
Spezia 1-2 Hellas Verona (06/01) – Serie A
Hellas Verona 1-1 Fiorentina (22/12) – Serie A
Juventini simply cannot wait to see their new signings in action, especially Vlahovic. The prolific Serbian forward is set to make his first Bianconeri start on Sunday and it’ll be interesting to see how much of an impact he’ll have right away.
Juve will undoubtedly be buoyed by Vlahovic, but Hellas Verona represent tricky opposition. Tudor’s common sense approach has seen the Gialloblu fly up the table and although they’ll be without Simeone for Sunday’s trip, they have two stars in Antonin Barak and Gianluca Caprari capable of winning the game for the visitors.
Overall, I expect Tudor’s side to turn this contest into a slugfest. Expect Juventus to be a little rusty and for their performance to resemble the majority of their displays the season. Vlahovic’s presence alone won’t evolve Allegri’s Juve into a free-flowing juggernaut.
Nevertheless, I’ll back the Biancoenri to just about get over the line in this one. But, don’t be surprised if Hellas Verona nick a point.
Prediction: Juventus 2-1 Hellas Verona