Juventus drew 1-1 with Serie C outfit Pro Sesto at Continassa on Wednesday as they prepare for Sunday’s hugely significant Derby d’Italia against Inter Milan.
Juve take on Simone Inzaghi’s slumping Nerazzurri at the weekend with the chance to usurp them in the table. Massimiliano Allegri’s side are currently enjoying a 16-game unbeaten run in Serie A and they’ve closed the gap to third-placed Inter, who led the way at the top of the table for a while, to one point.
Inzaghi’s side have won just one of their last seven in the league, with that victory coming against bottom of the table Salernitana.
Thus, Sunday’s derby presents Juve with a brilliant opportunity to cement themselves as genuine Scudetto challengers down the stretch. The gap between themselves and current leaders AC Milan is seven points.
Juventus 1-1 Pro Sesto: Bianconeri draw in warm-up ahead of Sunday’s Derby d’Italia
On Wednesday afternoon, Juventus confirmed that an hour-long behind closed doors friendly had taken place with Serie C side Pro Sesto.
Pro Sesto play in the same division as Juve’s Under-23s, but they’re 15 points worse off than the Bianconeri’s reserve side in the table.
Dusan Vlahovic and Paulo Dybala were both in action for Juventus but it was defender Daniele Rugani who grabbed the Old Lady’s goal, while Daniele Grandi was on the scoresheet for Pro Sesto.
Vlahovic, who returned to Continassa after picking up a minor injury at the start of the international break, is expected to start in his first Derby d’Italia on Sunday, while fellow January arrival Denis Zakaria should make the matchday squad. The Swiss international was in action on Wednesday having returned to training in the build-up to the break following a month on the sidelines thanks to a thigh injury.
Alex Sandro also took part in Wednesday’s friendly contest and Romeo Agresti reports that the remaining training sessions ahead of Sunday’s crucial clash will be decisive in determining the Brazilian’s status for the game.
Allegri will lead training once again on Thursday with the Europeans away on international duty set to return to the training field. The South American contingent aren’t expected to return until Friday, however, meaning they’ll only train once – on Saturday – ahead of the derby.