Juventus made short work of Novara with Mirko Vucinic bagging a brace to send them closer to the Scudetto.
The Bianconeri needed a late goal to snatch victory at Cesena midweek, securing their relegation, and travelled to another side practically in Serie B playing on artificial turf. Alessandro Matri was suspended and Simone Pepe injured, while Novara missed Carlalberto Ludi, Francesco Marianini, Samir Ujkani and the banned Michele Morganella. Giuseppe Mascara was only fit for the bench. Marco Borriello got a rare start to follow on from his first goal in a Juventus jersey midweek.
There were some very special guests in the stands, as Juventus legends Michel Platini and Giampiero Boniperti both originate from the Novara area.
Borriello flashed an angled drive across the face of goal after just two minutes, while an Andrea Pirlo long-range effort was deflected over for a corner.
Juventus took the lead with Mirko Vucinic, who volleyed a Pirlo free kick in off the underside of the crossbar. He almost had his back to goal, but got behind his defender to flick in a strange finish.
Stephan Lichtsteiner came sliding in to fire over the bar from close range, while Emanuele Giaccherini’s curler was well off target. Another Giaccherini attempt was considerably more impressive, although the volley across the face of goal was again wide from Pirlo’s chipped pass.
Pirlo tried from distance to sting the goalkeeper’s palms and Novara also had a chance on the half-hour mark when Andrea Mazzarani’s header looped on to the roof of the net.
Juventus doubled their lead when Giaccherini got down the left and crossed for Borriello’s diving header unmarked from six yards. Pirlo’s long ball had started the move, knocked back from the by-line by Claudio Marchisio.
Andrea Caracciolo went shoulder to shoulder with Giorgio Chiellini, but Leonardo Bonucci was able to clear the danger.
Pirlo threaded through for Giaccherini to roll across, but Borriello came sliding in and horribly mis-kicked from seven yards.
Arturo Vidal completed the rout moments later, as Vucinic ran on to a Lichtsteiner through ball and forced a tough save out of the goalkeeper at the near post, but Fontana could do nothing on Vidal’s follow-up.
Buffon’s palms were stung by a fierce free kick touched on for Mazzarani, but it was only Juventus at the Stadio Piola and Vucinic got the fourth. Giaccherini skipped to the by-line and had his shot parried at the near post, but Vucinic tapped in the loose ball on the rebound.
Andrea Barzagli deflected an Ivan Radovanovic effort to skim the woodwork, but Giaccherini threaded through for Eljero Elia to force a one-handed save out of Fontana.
Substitute Elia ran on to a long Pirlo ball and held off Lisuzzo to force another parry from Fontana.