Juventus v Torino

Torino v Juventus Match Preview, scouting and predictions


The latest Derby della Mole will have a weird vibe, as both Torino and Juventus might be headed for substantial changes in the summer and are poised for a ho-hum conclusion of the season.

  Serie A Week 32 – Saturday 13 April  2024 – Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino | Preview by Enrico Passarella



Torino aren’t far off from the seventh place, and the eighth one is also potentially in play for the European Conference League depending on a few factors, so they will have something to play until the end, which is always better than the alternative. The smoke signals seem to point toward a natural split with Ivan Juric as his contract runs out, but it’s not set in stone yet. A strong finish could convince both parties to stick together, but they’ll need help from other sides to go places.

There’ll be some glamorous openings, but he’s not one of the hot candidates. There’s a new shiny toy every year, and perhaps he should be a little more regarded for what he has accomplished in his run. In general, at least in the upper echelon, it feels like Serie A is shifting away from the Gian Piero Gasperini model toward schemes with equal intensity but more possession and technically-oriented and based on a four-man defense.

The Granata will have to eliminate some residual inconsistencies if they want to have a real shot at achieving something interesting. For instance, such a sound defensive team, which is up there in terms of clean sheets, simply can’t give up three goals to the sputtering Empoli. They have elevated themselves from the relegation struggle in recent campaigns. However, they aren’t at the point where they can overlook any opponent and prevail with run-of-the-mill performances.

Despite Duvan Zapata’s return to form and Antonio Sanabria chipping in occasionally, although not as consistently as last season, scoring is still an issue for them. Therefore, the pace, the pressure, and the attention need to be on point every time. They can’t just fall back on their skill and talent level, which isn’t necessarily too superior to half of the league. It’s a draining exercise that sometimes rears its ugly head.

The wear and tear has made its presence felt in the infirmary. They have lost valuable contributors along the way, starting with Perr Schuurs, who was on his way to making another leap. Ivan Ilic has had a few stops and goes that stunted his growth, Sanabria has been playing through a nagging tendon issue that didn’t allow him to always perform at high levels, and Gvidas Gineitis hurt his knee right as he was about to blossom.

Torino might ultimately opt to change their coach just to shake things up and see if they could go up a level with a different approach and a new voice in the room. It’s hard to imagine significant improvements could come from the transfer market. They are sound in every position, so they’d need relatively big investments to reinforce the squad.

As is the case every year, it’s more likely that they’ll lose a cornerstone or two. That’s the life of a minnow. Alessandro Buongiorno and Raoul Bellanova are the most likely candidates to be poached for good reasons. The former rounded out his game, partially thanks to the move to the middle of the defense sans Schuurs, and is one of the most physical and dependable defenders in Serie A.

The wingback had shown glimpses of talent at Cagliari but wasn’t as dominant. The so-so season at Inter increased his confidence even though he wasn’t confirmed. The Nerazzurri must regret it now since Denzel Dumfries has gone backward, and they might be forced to sell him for contractual reasons, Juan Cuadrado has been a bust, and they had to spend the same sum for the rawer Tajon Buchanan in January. There aren’t many players, arguably none, who are as influential for his team’s fortunes in his role.

The Granata have struck gold with those signings. They should attempt to replicate such an MO as they usually refrain from spending too much on single deals, bringing in either youngsters who didn’t pan out or established contributors who have run their course in top teams.

In the meantime, they’ll seek a signature and morale-boosting win against their archrivals, which they are dying to pick off after an almost decade-long slump. The momentum deriving from it would last for a while. Even if they aren’t the most spectacular or clutch side, they are a nuisance to face due to their physicality and compactness, especially when they bring the hustle and avoid silly mistakes on either end.

Expected XI (3-4-1-2): Milinkovic-Savic; Tameze, Buongiorno, Rodriguez; Bellanova, Linetty, Ricci, Vojvoda; Vlasic; Zapata, Sanabria. 

Doubts:  Tameze/Lovato, Vojvoda/Lazaro, Sanabria/Okereke. 

Injury Report:

Ilic (MCL tear) – Probable. 

Djidji, Pellegri (thigh strains), Gineitis (PCL sprain), Schuurs (ACL tear) – OUT



The performance against Fiorentina ended up being only a smidge better than the previous ones in Serie A due to the complicated final minutes, and a clear step back from the more convincing victory over Lazio in Coppa Italia. However, at least Juventus approached the game with the spirit and determination of a side trying to end a slump, which wasn’t the case in previous tilts. They couldn’t put together a complete game, as the fire didn’t last the whole 90 minutes, but it was still an improvement. A win is a win, especially in a round when those behind them slowed down, putting them closer to their Champions League goal.

Conversely, it’s mighty odd that the discourse about Massimiliano Allegri changes based on the latest results and not his whole body of work. Hopefully for them, it’s just journalistic chatter out of boredom, as something must be written every day; otherwise, it’d be worrying if their higher-ups were really wavering on such a decisive call depending on what are just small details in the grand scheme of things.

It’s entirely possible that there are different camps within the management, where Cristiano Giuntoli doesn’t have many close associates yet. But the ownership should fully entrust him and did just that publicly. Keeping the current coach just for economic reasons, as he’s unlikely to give up the final year of his contract, would be a terrible decision. They have the rare chance of hiring somebody who combines tactical brilliance, the ability to groom youngsters, a low salary, and has accomplished a lot in a short amount of time in Serie A but has experience at the top level as a player. The only understandable justifications for missing out on Thiago Motta would be if another powerhouse swooped in with a better offer or if he decided to stick with Bologna out of gratitude. It still wouldn’t be great since all rumors point in this direction, but it’d be better than if it happened because they were undecided, or even worse due to internal turmoil, or they opted not to change simply out of comfort.

During their skid, the question was whether Allegri would seek his way out through offense or defense. Obviously, the second was the case; plus, he has gone with the veterans as much as he could. It’s not great for Dusan Vlahovic and Federico Chiesa especially, who are both high-usage guys who need a lot of touches, but they’ll win most matches if they keep a clean sheet. It was their MO during the most successful part of their season. It’s still a little baffling that they lost the plot midway through it and why it occurred.

Perhaps it was simply a matter of motivations and further proof that the head makes all the difference. That would explain why they got back on track once they started feeling some pressure and there was potentially a trophy on the line. Some suggested the players seemed more dialed in after it became more apparent that Allegri was likely to be gone eventually. It’d be an ugly affair if that were true. The rut ended just in time to avoid a late-season coaching change, as they got the results and jolt they needed at the very last moment.

Since their remaining matches will be more meaningful than they could have been, they won’t have the opportunity to test a few players ahead of a slew of summer decisions given some short-term contracts and loans. Plus, it doesn’t allow them to plan ahead too much. Still, it’ll be a wrap with two or three more wins if Atalanta slip up again. They’ll have to thank their great early run for it.

The small forays into different schemes have proven that, despite having the men to zhuzh things up, they haven’t really worked on anything different from 3-5-2. Perhaps the only tweak they could try is Kenan Yildiz as a proactive box-to-box/no.10 and see how it looks. It shouldn’t be too hard to pull off with some defensive-minded choices elsewhere. Even throughout their experimental phase, something close to 3-4-3, with the talent on one side of the pitch and Chiesa on the other, wasn’t on their radar.

It’s the derby, so, even though it’s more felt by Torino, they should get up for it, which is arguably their main issue, if only to defend their winning tradition.

Expected XI (3-5-2): Szczesny; Gatti, Bremer, Danilo; Cambiaso, McKennie, Locatelli, Rabiot, Kostic; Chiesa, Vlahovic. 

Doubts:  Cambiaso/Weah, Kostic/Iling, Chiesa/Yildiz. 

Injury Report: Milik (thigh strain) – OUT. 

Suspensions: Pogba, Fagioli. 


Draw – Under 2.5 Goals

Enrico Passarella

Contributor for @footitalia1 | Serie A | News, Transfers, Betting |