Juventus triumphed over a spirited Fiorentina side yesterday night and maintained their 14-point lead at the top of the table. Lazio’s 4-0 win over Parma postponed Juve’s title celebrations, but Massimiliano Allegri’s side can wrap up the title if they pick up a win against Sampdoria on Saturday.
The game started with Fiorentina pulling the strings in the first few minutes and looked comfortable in possession. Juventus finally started playing some football of their own after the 15-minute mark as Fiorentina struggled to get hold of the ball. However, in the 31st minute, Andrea Pirlo stuck out a leg to take down winger Joachin in the penalty area. Rodriguez converted the resultant penalty to give his side a lead against the run of play.
Fiorentina weren’t able to hold their lead for long as Juve took only three minutes to find an equaliser. Andrea Pirlo made up for his mistake and provided a beautifully flighted ball from a free kick which was nodded home by Fernando Llorente. The reigning champions then took the lead just before half time when a Patrice Evra cross was cleverly headed home by Carlos Tevez.
In the second half, the Viola were handed a golden opportunity to equalise when Joachin was once again taken down, but this time, by Chiellini. However, Rodriguez failed to convert it after trying to smash it. Juve punished Fiorentina in the 70th minute after their defence tried to play an offside trap, but failed in doing so. Tevez converted the chance after slotting the ball past the keeper. Fiorentina tried to push in order to reduce the deficit but had to wait until extra time. Ilicic scored from 20 yards out, but unfortunately, Fiorentina failed to back that wonderful set piece with an equaliser.
Losing the title very unlikely from here, says Allegri
Juve boss Massimiliano Allegri was delighted with the win and added that it will take an almighty loss in form for his side to lose the title from here, a At this point it would take a reverse miracle for us to lose this Scudetto,a he told Sky Sport Italia.
a We have to be wary, as wea ve lost out last two away games, but the lads deserve compliments for an extraordinary campaign.
a We have a 14-point lead, we need one more and hope to get it on Saturday so we can best prepare for the Champions League.
a This victory allows us to face the remaining Serie A games with a more relaxed state of mind. When youa re nearly there, this anxiety comes in.
a When you are 14 points in front, it is natural to have some dips in concentration. There are also many players who havena t been available this season for long periods, so the others had to carry on throughout and not rest as much as Ia d have liked,” he added.