Juventus made short work of Catania and this 4-0 victory will boost confidence, but not for Gigi De Canio’s men.
The Bianconeri were back on track beating Genoa 2-0 on Sunday, ending a run of two straight defeats in all competition. There was still tension, as Antonio Conte refused to speak to the media and he was without Mirko Vucinic, Fabio Quagliarella, Stephan Lichtsteiner and Simone Pepe. Martin Caceres and Paolo De Ceglie made rare starts. Catania made their debut under Coach Luigi De Canio in a 0-0 draw with Sassuolo, so confidence was low. Jaroslav Plasil, Nicolas Spolli, Giuseppe Bellusci, Monzon, Kingsley Boateng and Pablo Barrientos missed out, so 19-year-old Bruno Petkovic started in attack.
The Sicilians conquered Turin in December 2009, but this season Juve had a 100 per cent record at home in Serie A and Catania had lost all of their away games. It was also a reunion, as Conte worked as De Canio’s assistant manager at Siena in 2005-06.
Carlos Tevez had a couple of early opportunities, but Gonzalo Bergessio was relatively unmarked on Keko’s counter-attack and had his shot desperately charged down as he pulled the trigger.
Fernando Llorente’s glancing header turned a Paolo De Caglie cross inches wide, but a stroke of luck gave Juve the advantage.
Arturo Vidal’s effort from distance took a double deflection off Tiberio Guarente and Alexis Rolin to wrong-foot Mariano Andujar at the near stick.
Andrea Pirlo doubled their lead with one of his trademark free kicks, curling over the wall where the goalkeeper was unsighted.
Tevez slipped just before the break, scuffing his shot into the arms of Andujar. Straight after the restart Petkovic and Bergessio had interesting opportunities, but Claudio Marchisio’s fierce strike cracked against the post.
Tevez got his name on the scoresheet when pouncing on a ricochet off Llorente and dribbling round Andujar. He celebrated by putting the ball under his jersey and sending kisses to his partner in the crowd.
Leonardo Bonucci did not have the best game, but he still made it 4-0 when tapping in a well-worked corner set up for him by substitute Sebastian Giovinco.
Guarente received a second yellow card for his foul from behind on Marchisio, completing Catania’s nightmare evening.
Sent off: Guarente 84 (C)