The title favourites meet title outsiders as Turin hosts Juventus vs Lazio. Both teams enjoyed successful seasons in 2017-18.
The Bianconeri claimed their seventh consecutive scudetto while Lazio scraped into the Champions League after a decade-long absence.
As if one of Serie A’s biggest matches needed any more significance, it’s Cristiano Ronaldo’s home debut…
Juventus vs Lazio Match Preview
What do you give the club which has everything? Cristiano Ronaldo is probably the right answer.
The 33-year-old Portuguese moved effortlessly from the Bernabeu to Turin and is expected to play a significant role in delivering the Champions League which La Vecchia Signora so desperately craves.
It’s his first appearance at the Juventus Stadium since his majestic La Rovesciata during Real Madrid’s 3 – 0 win in the Champions League last season. The crowd’s reaction that day persuaded him Turin was his next career stop rather than Manchester or the MLS.
The tifosi have high expectations of the Portuguese striker given his record-breaking stay in Spain. He didn’t quite meet them last weekend in Chievo but Juve will be happy with the three points from the 3 – 2 win.
Coming back from 2 – 1 down to secure victory pleased Max Allegri or calmed his fury at falling behind in the first place.
Lazio fared less well, albeit against stronger opposition than the Gialloblu. Ciro Immobile gave them the lead at home to Napoli but they were undone by two goals in a 15-minute spell by the visitors. If there is any solace in that defeat, it comes from having 37 games remaining.
At home, Juventus are unbeaten in 36 of the last 38 home matches in Serie A. The two teams which beat them? Lazio and Napoli, last season.
The latter seemed to have turned the title race on its head when Khalidou Koulibaly produced a thunderous header to win with six games remaining. That Napoli contrived to throw the title away is history.
Lazio meanwhile are free spirits away from the Stadio Olimpico; the Serie A entertainers. In 22 of their last 24 away games, they saw over 2.5 goals, albeit with games not always finishing in their favour. The two games which saw under 2.5 goals saw the Biancocelesti keep clean sheets: 0 – 0 at Internazionale and a 1 – 0 win in Turin, this time at Torino.
Juventus vs Lazio News
Leonardo Spinazzola is the only absentee for the home side with Max Allegri likely to limit the tweaks to his side. Mario Mandzukic is expected to start in place of Juan Cuadrado with Douglas Costa switching to the right flank.
Lazio are without the suspended Patric but welcome back Lucas Leiva from suspension. Luiz Felipe and Jordan Lukaku are both injured and miss this trip. Senad Lulic is also available and may slot straight into the left-back position.
Juventus vs Lazio Head-to-Head
Juventus lead the head-to-head at the Juventus Stadium with 6 wins to Lazio’s one with three drawn. Each of the winning games for both sides saw the victors score two or more goals.
Last season’s 2 – 1 win by Lazio is their only victory over Juventus is league or cup in the past 14 meetings home or away (D2, L11).|
Juventus vs Lazio Form Guide
Last six most recent matches.
Juventus vs Lazio Key Men
Even at 33, Cristiano Ronaldo is still the man all eyes will be drawn to in this clash. The Portuguese arrives in Turin having amassed 450 goals in 438 appearances for Real Madrid.
He broke just about every club record in the Spanish record and will be remembered as a Real Madrid legend. Italy is a different beast. The defences are better drilled than the majority of their Spanish counterparts making them tougher to break down as he found last weekend.
Equally important to Juventus is Wojciech Szczesny. The Pole endured a poor afternoon in Chievo on an occasion where the #1 shirt became his own. Replacing Gianluigi Buffon is not an easy task, but he is going to find himself under intense scrutiny as Juve seek to defend their title.
No doubt he is pleased the arrival of Ronaldo diverts the spotlight away from him for now.
For Lazio, Ciro Immobile remains their key attacker. A stunning goal last weekend seemed to the set them on the road to an opening day victory. However, one goal wasn’t enough for the Romans.
In his last 73 Serie A appearances, Immobile has netted 53 times. The 28-year-old is their ‘go-to guy’ when in difficult situations. He grabbed both goals when the two sides last met in Turin and the Biancocelesti need more of that this time around if they are to take the points.
Juventus vs Lazio Prediction
The script is written. and Cristiano Ronaldo will score if television gets its’ way. Whether reality will deliver that fairy tale is another matter.
Even so, Juventus’ win last weekend proved their resilience when it matters and this match matters. Equally, Lazio’s defeat to Napoli despite taking the lead doesn’t bode well.
For that reason, we like Juventus to win and both sides to score at 2/1 with Novibet.