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Feb 10, 2019 at 5pm UK at ​MAPEI Stadium - Città del Tricolore (Reggio nell'Emilia)
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Preview: Sassuolo vs. Juventus - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Sunday's Serie A encounter between Sassuolo and Juventus.

Juventus make the trip to face Sassuolo this weekend having failed to win either of their last two matches in all competitions, their longest winless streak all season.

Sassuolo head into the weekend sitting in 11th position in the standings, although just six points separate I Neroverdi from fifth-placed AC Milan.


Sassuolo striker Domenico Berardi celebrates scoring in the Serie A clash with Inter Milan on August 19, 2018© Reuters

Sassuolo will be relatively satisfied with their efforts in Serie A this season, despite having failed to build on registering 13 points from their opening half-a-dozen matches.

However, despite the January exit of Kevin-Prince Boateng, manager Roberto De Zerbi will still be determined to at least finish in the top half of the standings and even launch a late bid for a place in next season's Europa League.

There would have been fears that the exit of the flamboyant attacker to Barcelona may have had a negative effort on their form, but five points have come from their last three games in Serie A.

Draws have been recorded at each of Inter Milan and Genoa, while Sassuolo were dominant as they got the better of Cagliari Calcio by a 3-0 scoreline at the end of last month.

They remain with just three wins from their last 16 league games, but regularly adding draws to their record has at least kept the club with hopes of making an impact at the right end of the table in the coming months.

Facing Juventus, AC Milan and Napoli in their next five league outings is a tough run of fixtures, but Sassuolo can cause a surprise against any of those trio providing that they remain difficult to beat.

Shipping nine goals in 180 minutes of football against Roma and Atalanta BC seems to have acted as the catalyst for an improved run of results, but De Zerbi still needs Khouma Babacar to provide more goals in the final third.

The Senegalese has netted twice in his last three Serie A outings, but the 25-year-old remains with just six for the season and he will need to at least double that if Sassuolo are to continue on an upward curve.

Recent form: DLLDWD
Recent form (all competitions): LLLDWD


Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri pictured on January 27, 2019© Reuters

Juventus very rarely fail to win matches on the domestic front, and it was considered a huge shock when Atalanta recorded a 3-0 victory over Massimiliano Allegri's side in the Coppa Italia at the end of last month.

There was every expectancy that Juventus would respond by getting the better of Parma in front of their own supporters last weekend, but Allegri witnessed his side concede three goals in the final 26 minutes to hand the visitors a share of the spoils.

That has left Juventus heading into their visit of Sassuolo having failed to win two matches in a row for the first time since April, and Allegri will be aware that he needs to find a resolution to his side's recent drop in form.

Allegri has not been helped by a number of injury problems - especially in defence - but there are signs that this previously all-conquering side are beginning to falter at an important stage in the season.

Juventus still hold a nine-point advantage at the top of the league standings, but there will be concerns that the team are not in the best frame of mind less than two weeks ahead of their Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid in Spain.

Allegri has ensured that Juventus have dominated the domestic scene since his arrival in 2014, but the Champions League has remained elusive and is regarded as the biggest priority this season.

The majority of the first-team squad have been rotated over the course of the current Serie A campaign, but there has been an over-reliance on Cristiano Ronaldo who has been given considerably more minutes than any of his teammates.

The Portuguese superstar had a hand in all three goals last weekend, but Allegri must surely be wary of the 34-year-old's standards dropping over the coming months having started him in all but one of Juventus's league matches since his arrival in the summer.

Recent form: WDWWWD
Recent form (all competitions): WWWWLD

Team News

Cristiano Ronaldo in action for Juventus on December 1, 2018© Reuters

Ronaldo should remain in the side - despite his current workload - and the forward is likely feature in the middle of Paulo Dybala and Mario Mandzukic.

However, Juventus are still without Andrea Barzagli, Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini due to injury, meaning that Martin Caceres should keep his place in the team.

Either Rodrigo Bentancur or Emre Can are expected to be preferred to Sami Khedira in the middle of the park.

Alfred Duncan is suspended for Sassuolo, and that should lead to a starting role for Mehdi Bourabia.

Francesco Magnanelli and Marlon Santos are sidelined, while Filip Djuricic is likely to retain his spot in the starting lineup having got on the scoresheet in his last outing.

Sassuolo possible starting lineup:
Consigli; Lirola, Peluso, Magnani, Rogerio; Locatelli, Sensi, Bourabia; Berardi, Babacar, Djuricic

Juventus possible starting lineup:
Szczesny; Cancelo, Rugani, Caceres, Sandro; Bentancur, Pjanic, Matuidi; Dybala, Ronaldo, Mandzukic

Head To Head

Sassuolo head into Sunday's match having suffered defeat in each of their last six competitive meetings with Juventus and having conceded 18 goals in the process.

However, their last success against the defending champions came as recently as 2015 when a 1-0 win was recorded in front of their own supporters.

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We say: Sassuolo 1-3 Juventus

There is an argument that there is never a good time to face Juventus, but playing the league leaders who are looking to end a two-game winless streak is not ideal for Sassuolo. Allegri will have Juve pumped up for this match, and we expect a relatively comfortable triumph for the visitors.

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Cristiano Ronaldo in action for Juventus on January 27, 2019
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How Juventus could line up against Parma

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