We’re entering the final ten games of the 2021/22 Serie A season and Juventus kick-off their stretch with a trip to the relegation-threatened Sampdoria.
The Bianconeri maintained their impressive unbeaten run in the league last weekend as they edged past Spezia 1-0. The Old Lady’s recent form, from purely a results perspective, is super impressive considering their injury woes.
There are signs of Juve getting healthier ahead of Saturday’s trip to the Luigi Ferraris, but Massimiliano Allegri will still be without a whole heap of first-teamers.
The manager will have one eye on next Wednesday’s Champions League round of 16 second leg against Villarreal, but Juve’s lengthy injury list means there’s little scope for rotation. Although, one or two heavy-hitters could earn rests.
Juventus’ predicted XI vs Sampdoria
Here’s our predicted Juventus XI for the upcoming Serie A clash against Sampdoria.
Goalkeeper & Defenders
Wojciech Szczesny (GK) – Szczesny earned his first clean sheet in a month last weekend and I expect him to retain his spot between the sticks for this Serie A encounter. Juve’s number one missed the reverse fixture back in September.
Danilo (RB) – Danilo has been as assured as ever since returning from injury in January, and while the manager would undoubtedly want to rest the veteran ahead of Villarreal, Allegri’s hands are tied somewhat. The Brazilian could captain the side.
Daniele Rugani (CB) – Rugani returned from injury last weekend and should continue alongside Matthijs de Ligt despite Giorgio Chiellini’s potential comeback.
Matthijs de Ligt (CB) – The Dutchman had a couple of nervy defensive moments in the second half against Spezia, but his performance was otherwise fine. He’ll continue to lead the backline on Saturday.
Luca Pellegrini (LB) – De Sciglio and Alex Sandro are reportedly back in contention this weekend but I suspect that Allegri will be looking for the pair to earn minutes, and potentially starts, against Villarreal next Wednesday. Thus, Pellegrini should get the nod in Genoa.
Juan Cuadrado (RM) – The veteran described himself as “calm” amid possible contract talks, but he’s hopeful of renewing with the Bianconeri. Cuadrado’s currently enjoying a productive run of form and he should start down the right on Saturday.
Arthur Melo (CM) – Arthur has completed three full games on the spin and he’s poised to add to that streak this weekend.
Manuel Locatelli (CM) – Locatelli was let off the leash against Spezia and we could see the Italian gifted similar freedom at the Luigi Ferraris. With Arthur in the single pivot and being aided in the build-up by Adrien Rabiot, expect Locatelli to frequently advance from his box-to-box role and support the front two.
Adrien Rabiot (LM) – Bernardeschi’s suspension means that Rabiot should retain his place in the XI. The Frenchman will continue in his flexible, phase-dependent function.
Alvaro Morata (ST) – Morata got his just reward for an upturn in form since Vlahovic arrived by scoring his first goal in well over a month against Spezia. The Spaniard has massively benefitted from the Serb’s arrival, but he’ll likely be playing without him in this one.
Moise Kean (ST) – Vlahovic has started every game for Juventus since the start of February and he desperately needs a rest. I think Allegri will gift him one on Saturday with the all-important second leg against Villarreal looming. That means Kean should earn a start alongside Morata.