Wednesday May 17 2017
One down, two to go

Lazio were beaten in the Coppa Italia Final by many of the qualities that allowed Juventus to dominate this season, writes Adam Digby.

One down, two to go. Having slipped up in the league on Sunday, Juventus returned to the Stadio Olimpico on Wednesday night, recording a 2-0 win over Lazio that ensured the Bianconeri were the first team to have won the Coppa Italia in three consecutive seasons.

While Roma shocked the Turin giants in the same venue just three days ago, their crosstown rivals were quickly and easily swept aside thanks to first half goals from Dani Alves and Leonardo Bonucci.

This was nothing new for these two sides, Juve winning each of their six previous meetings with the Biancocelesti, scoring 11 goals and keeping a clean sheet every time. The gulf in quality between them – a chasm further highlighted by the 15-point gap in the current Serie A table – was evident throughout the game, but the 90+ minutes of action also served as a perfect microcosm of how Max Allegri’s team have fared in the 2016-17 campaign.

They did more than enough to win, Lazio arguably fortunate to only be trailing by two goals after a first half that Juventus completely dominated. For large portions of the opening stanza, the Rome-based side struggled to gain a foothold in the game, Dani Alves and Alex Sandro stretching them down either flank while Paulo Dybala tormented them through the middle.

While the Argentinian roved around the pitch and popped up wherever he found pockets of space between the opposition defence and midfield, Gonzalo Higuain and Mario Mandzukic worked tirelessly to close down Lazio whenever Juve lost possession. Of course the presence of the BBC kept their attacking prowess fully in check, Andrea Barzagli, Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini denying Keita Balde Diao and Ciro Immobile the chances other teams have surrendered.

However, perhaps it was the displays from unheralded names that best showcased Juve’s complete control in this clash. With Sami Khedira injured and Miralem Pjanic suspended, Allegri was forced to hand Tomas Rincon a place in the starting XI, the Coach rewarded with a solid, reliable outing from the Venezuelan midfielder. He provided a strong filter alongside Claudio Marchisio, the duo helping the Bianconeri kill the tie off after the break, the game never truly looking like a genuine contest.

Further back, goalkeeper Norberto Neto once again deputised for Gigi Buffon, the Brazilian making a number of saves – albeit largely comfortable ones – to register his seventh shutout in 13 appearances this term. Neither Rincon nor Neto are likely to feature in the Champions League Final, a game that Juventus will certainly be able to focus on once they take care of business against Crotone on Sunday.

Cup finals should not be this straightforward, but the celebrations for this victory will be somewhat muted given what lies ahead. Even as they move on to their next objective, the Coppa Italia Final showed once again why Juventus remain head and shoulders above their domestic competition.

Keep up to date with the latest news and action from Spain's Primera Division with Football Espana - from the team behind Football Italia.

Have your say...

Explain the countless number of invisible penalties you get. 13, really? Without them you would surely not even be in top 3. Anyways, I understand. Small mentality clubs have small mentality fans. And after Calciopoli, we resurrected to European giants, while you did nothing but go in decline. That is were the superiority is. Your club along with inter.
on the 20th May, 2017 at 3:34pm
At least Romaniac got the number of Scudettos right. I'm not sure why he's complaining about refereeing when Roma got so many ghost penalties that were conveniently swept under the radar this season. I know why nobody talks about them, and everyone knows it wouldn't even be a race at this stage without so much help.

Anyway, we have Crotone to worry about. Real can come later, and hopefully we make them look as "good" as Barcelona.
on the 20th May, 2017 at 10:31am
@Romaniac: Winning or losing CL final is a different matter. Juve have been in as many finals as Barcelona.Did they buy their way to finals? So how come they did not buy the whole thing?! Or maybe they've been strong enough to be considered a European heavy weight... kinda unlucky in finals and one-off games...real shame. But do you know what embarrasses serie A in Europe? A Roma side that concedes 7-0 defeats in CL every other season. A provincial side with a big freakin mouth.
on the 20th May, 2017 at 4:20am
Romaniac- Why aren't you on a blog that is about your coach that doesn't want anything more to do with you?. If your not to busy trolling the Juve blogs :)
on the 20th May, 2017 at 1:04am
Romaniac - You can't play the ignorant doping/bribing card when we make 7 Champions league finals over 3 decades. 3 Uefa cup wins and 4 appearances also over 3 decades. Go find a Napulitan to cry on their shoulder.
on the 20th May, 2017 at 1:02am
"English fans who still bang on about how England won the World Cup in 1966". Ha! only difference is that was a victory which occurred 51 years ago, while Juve's was a disgrace that occurred only 11 years ago. Apples and oranges. I'm just stating the fact that "doping, cheating and bribing" will forever be a part of Juve's reputation with veteran football fans across the world. Do Juve do it now? Nope. Yet, if you are gonna talk about Roma's loser reputation, I will gladly bring up Juve's.
on the 19th May, 2017 at 10:52pm
@Roamaniac - I strongly recommend you move on. How much longer do we have to listen to the same old stories about doping, cheating and bribing??? Its like listening to those English fans who still bang on about how England won the World Cup in 1966. Stop living in the past - its not healthy!!
on the 19th May, 2017 at 2:48pm
romaniac is just a little troll or just dumb, but in any case, please do not feed him.

on the 19th May, 2017 at 1:39pm
@romanic so what you are really trying to tell us is that you are dumb because your knowledge of match fixing points to juve alone . Either you are dumb or you are only able to read about the events of 2006 and nothing else. I will go with you are dumb. It is just as easy to say you are dumb as it is to say juve are cheats.
on the 19th May, 2017 at 11:04am
If I was ashamed of Roma, I doubt that I would have my username. The reason for the "juve love" is that no articles about Roma are positive on this blog. We have scored more points than 18 other Serie A teams. Even in the blog post for Rima v Juve, no credit was given without making the excuse that juve rested starters. No mention of Roma without the league's top scorer, Strootman and had an unfit Radja who not only dominated but scored. Just be journalists. Stop bashing Roma at every turn.
on the 19th May, 2017 at 9:29am
Rez. What you fail to comprehend is that I am obviously, not a fan of Roma because of their trophy case. No one can claim to be but I rather support "losers" than dopers and cheats. 34 scudetti and just 2 CL's. Shows how hard it was to buy refs. Your team has the reputation of "That cheating Italian team" throughout Europe. The one that shamed Serie A and nearly ruined it. A loser reputation can go away, but not a cheaters. Good luck in the CL.
on the 19th May, 2017 at 12:20am
@Romaniac: Not your fault that your team doesn't win jack... But it's definitely your fault if you don't learn to live with it... De Rossi just had an interview talking about never winning with Roma as a player and hoping to do so someday as a coach...sad but true.
on the 18th May, 2017 at 9:40pm
@Romaniac Adam Digby is a Juve fan and that's pretty well known. Just check his twitter feed. Is there anything wrong with a Juve fan writing a blog post after winning a domestic trophy? I don't think so.
on the 18th May, 2017 at 2:31pm
@Mr Lazio thanks mate i know that wasn't easy but Lazio fans have shown class unlike some others Hope Lazio keep improving and do even better next season Cheers mate
on the 18th May, 2017 at 12:43pm
Treble is happening suckas
on the 18th May, 2017 at 9:54am
Romaniac: When Roma celebrate second place again, or third place this year, as if they've won something, they'll write about it here, and readers will groan at the sadness of it. Nobody wants pathetic stories about permanent losers who pretend they're winners, and teams that constantly complain about refs and bad luck. We want stories about real winners, and teams with winning mentalities.
on the 18th May, 2017 at 9:43am
Congratulations to Juve a class act in the first half should have been four up! We never looked dangerous and Juve fully deserved to take the Coppa- must single out Dani Alves so calm on the ball wonderful player.
on the 18th May, 2017 at 8:30am
Lets see if someone will post a message about Juve bribing the referees to win the treble. That train is never late.
on the 18th May, 2017 at 8:27am
@Romaniac ??? they really love juve cause there are a lot of articles about them ? they are the only Italian team making serie A look good after all. Because of this particular article ? well they did just make history by becoming the first team ever to get 3 coppa italias in a row. What's there not to love. let's just make sure to trash crotone celebrate and then just focus all of our energy on the UCL final.
on the 18th May, 2017 at 7:48am
on the 18th May, 2017 at 3:02am
on the 18th May, 2017 at 2:07am
Congrats to ROMA for winning NOTHING LMAO!
on the 17th May, 2017 at 10:55pm
Wow you guys Really love Juve here lol
on the 17th May, 2017 at 9:42pm

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