NEWS
Monday January 9 2017
Serie A Team of Week 19

On a weekend that saw Juventus set a new all-time record of 26 consecutive Serie A home wins, Dave Taylor selects his best XI from Week 19.

Wojciech Szcezesny [Roma]

The man of the day pulled off several brilliant saves, starting in the opening minutes when stopping a strong Diego Laxalt effort. Continuing to be a wall, his reaction save to a later deflection was outstanding, while in the dying seconds his save from Lucas Ocampos was superlative. Exceptional.

Lorenzo Tonelli [Napoli]

In a solid debut, the ex-Empoli defender popped up at the last minute to score and win the three points with a goal, which must have felt like a belt in the bicuspids by a baseball bat for the Sampdoria players. Firm.

Federico Fazio [Roma]

In the absence of Kostas Manolas, the Argentinian stood up to the plate and led the defence with ferocity and assuredness and left the opposition forwards itching like a man in a fuzzy tree. Immovable.

Francesco Acerbi [Sassuolo]

Another superb performance from the 28-year-old, who also caused a few problems up the field. Always ready to close down space he was kept busy by the visitors but dealt with any danger making numerous clearances and two major interceptions. Practical.

Andrea Conti [Atalanta]

Always a problem down the right, looking to set off attacks which saw him in lots of possession. Scored the third goal after Stefano Sorrentino parried two efforts only for the midfielder to slot home at the third attempt. Inspiring.

Remo Freuler [Atalanta]

With a midfield missing Franck Kessie and Roberto Gagliardini the Swiss ace took over and bossed Chievo out of the game. Producing the assist for the first goal and then scoring himself, it topped another fine performance. Resourceful.

Alejandro Gomez [Atalanta]

The Argentinian dynamo was in fine form and scored a brace, with his first coming after just four minutes following Andrea Petagna’s defence-splitting pass that Remo Freuler controlled to set up Papu. His second came 20 minutes later when he blasted home from 12 yards. Inventive.

Ivan Perisic [Inter]

Sweeping over the pitch like a monstrous Mesozoic bird in search of it’s primeval nest, the Croatian was just too hot to handle. Scoring an excellent brace, both his goals came late in each half and he was undoubtedly man of the match. Creative.

Miralem Pjanic [Juventus]

Worried the visiting defence and produced the assist for Gonzalo Higuain’s first goal with a superb chipped pass. Moved well with and without the ball and continued to be an outlet and a key factor in Juve’s winning run. Alert.

Ciro Immobile [Lazio]

Always willing to have a shot on goal he worried visiting ‘keeper Marco Festa early on who did superbly to fingertip the Lazio man’s volley to safety. Later he managed to test Festa again with a real screamer while he eventually scored in the dying minutes when he slotted home a deflection. Threatening.

Gonzalo Higuain [Juventus]

On the ball from the word go scoring with a low volley just seven minutes in. He continued to be a nuisance pushing and probing like an eager hummingbird and scored his second with a strong direct header. Vivacious.

Special Mentions: Christian Puggioni [Sampdoria], Jakub Janko [Udinese], Manuel Locatelli [Milan], Carlos Bacca [Milan], Radja Nainggolan [Roma], Marco Festa [Crotone], Antonio Candreva [Inter].

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