Monday November 20 2017
Wk13: Take nothing for granted

There's a revolution taking place in Serie A and anyone who assumes things are going their way will be left empty-handed, writes Susy Campanale.

After a break for international duty that saw Italy miss out on their first World Cup since 1958, it was only fitting that this weekend’s Serie A games should follow a similar theme: take nothing for granted.

The Azzurri thought they could drop some of the most talented players and use others out of position, because that would still be enough to beat Sweden. Juventus must’ve known they couldn’t leave out Paulo Dybala, Gigi Buffon and Andrea Barzagli for a trip to the only team with a perfect home record, and yet seemed genuinely surprised when they lost to Sampdoria.

Giorgio Chiellini and Max Allegri both said the same thing, that Juve seemed irritated, almost affronted, to have gone behind at Marassi. Did the Old Lady think this was beneath them? Samp are not Benevento, they are an excellent team with well-drilled tactics and talented players. If the Bianconeri are taking tough fixtures like this for granted, then they can kiss goodbye to a seventh straight Scudetto.

The emblematic image of the day was Sami Khedira, stood with hand up, looking behind him towards the assistant referee, demanding a free kick while Gianmarco Ferrari tapped in undisturbed. He resembled a Viscount during the start of a revolution, haughtily requesting his afternoon tea as the proletariat banged on the door.

Has there been a revolution in Serie A this season, and if so, who ends up taking the reins of power? Napoli are the favourites and didn’t need to get out of second gear to dispatch Milan. Vincenzo Montella in his blissful parallel universe saw an even match with a fine performance from his players, even though they were the only side other than Benevento who failed to get a single touch in the opposition penalty area during the first half. When your stats are compared to the team with the all-time worst start to a season, it’s time to worry.

Roma take absolutely nothing for granted under Eusebio Di Francesco and they are relishing every moment of this season, knocking down one taboo after another. Lazio saw their run of nine consecutive victories in all competition come crashing to an end in the worst fixture of all to finally stumble, the Derby della Capitale. The Aquile are an intriguing side who can play some fine football, but who will have the bragging rights come the end of the season? I’m going for the Giallorossi, as they have strength in depth, talent and thanks to their new Coach a solid tactical identity.

Inter climbed back into second place with a 2-0 victory over Atalanta, which again confirmed just how much they rely on Mauro Icardi. If there’s one thing you can take for granted, it’s that Maurito will find the net at San Siro. He’s a wonderful centre-forward anyway, but seems to hit another gear under the lights of the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza. What would Luciano Spalletti’s men do if Icardi were to pick up an injury or suffer a freakish loss of form? Nerazzurri fans hope they’ll never have to find out the answer to that question.

Benevento President Oreste Vigorito went viral when insisting a curse on his team was behind their record-breaking zero points total, but after the defeat to Sassuolo, some might believe it’s true. It’s not possible that a team can continue to concede stoppage-time goals just when they seem to be on the cusp of a positive result. Domenico Berardi hit the penalty against the bar in injury time, so surely they had dodged the bullet this time and would pick up their maiden top flight point? Take nothing for granted. Federico Peluso popped up with a header for 2-1 at the 94th minute.

When Chievo first came on to the Serie A scene, practically everyone had a soft spot for the Flying Donkeys who succeeded against the odds. Now you can feel all the fans of other clubs willing Benevento to get a point just out of sheer pity.

Have your say...
"If Juve want to win, they'll win it"

Ha ha ha. Juve have tried to win Champions League for the last 22 years. Biggest chokerteam in Europe.

Buffon won more european titles with Parma than Juve!
on the 23rd November, 2017 at 8:22am
Anon, you don't need to tell me which team you support, and it doesn't take a genius to know that it has to be the one that has given the least support to Azzurri for the past centuries with their usual excuse of club policy, in which they shamelessly claimed to be an international club that ditches potential home grow talents.
on the 22nd November, 2017 at 5:26am
And people were wondering why is the Azzurri falling when you see this sort of people belonging in a low class with a mentality that only knows how to point their fingers on the referee. Give a vote to this "anon" and we get ourselves into a detrimental situation. Its no wonder the lega pro have the highest Tavecchio's supporters, whereas an upper class teams like Juve were among the protestors against his appointment.
on the 22nd November, 2017 at 5:21am
"Report: UEFA to reject Milan’s FFP deal"

So who were the Milanisti who said I was wrong when I said they would NOT meet their FFP obligations??. Money Laundering has been completed, and now time to sell and move on. Bunch of shameless criminals allowed to purchase a historic club like Milan and turn it into a laughing stock.
on the 22nd November, 2017 at 3:24am
susy can keep her backhanded compliments where the sun will never shine and mnm when cheilni was sayng what he said he was referring to the commitment of the referees rather than the players
on the 21st November, 2017 at 11:32pm
Calma ragazzi calma, don't gang up on Susy. She's cool, I promise you. I mean she does hate Inter with all her might, just as I dislike her beloved Milan (and Juve too), so be glad when she gives us a backhanded compliment ;)
on the 21st November, 2017 at 6:45pm
Comparing Allegri to Ventura is just plain stupid. While the latter was ignorant for choosing players that haven't been fit or settled into the squad and formation, Allegri deployed a team that have been working together for over a year and some knew each other far longer. All of Juve players were fit and was taught for months over with the same tactical arrangement. As a quote from Chiellini - "If Juve want to win, they'll win it!" pointing to commitment from his teammates and rightly so!
on the 21st November, 2017 at 5:17pm
Well as a Juve fan, I'm tired of the scudetto but never tired of winning! The team is in need of a challenge and that is to win everything! Scudetto is no more than one of the piece within the collection. What frustrates me is whenever a game to play, that motto "Winning is all that matters" gets threw off the window, and even more vividly against stronger side.
on the 21st November, 2017 at 5:09pm
When a team wins the league six years in a row you have to question if they have the appetite for yet another win.I suspect even some of the fans are a little bored of it and are crying for some real competition.

Seria A is desperate,desperate for another team to win the league.Let's pray it happens.
on the 21st November, 2017 at 9:26am
Even if Juve eventually win the league which they probably will,at least they haven't already pulled away from the others and we might actually have an exciting season at the top of the league for a change.
on the 21st November, 2017 at 9:23am
on the 21st November, 2017 at 1:27am
I said on day one it would be Juventus and Inter 1-2 at seasons end. Inter are far better then they've shown also. Napoli will collapse later in the year and still have both head to heads with Juve left.
on the 21st November, 2017 at 1:17am
If Juve play like we know Juve can, the league wouldn't be in favour of Napoli at this current time. Once Berna, Costa and Pjaca play more in attack, Juve will be very dangerous. It's only November...calma.
on the 21st November, 2017 at 1:14am
The best thing that's happened for Italian Football by far this year is the resignation of Tavecchio...this is a win for the Azzurri, Serie A and all us tifosi...

on the 20th November, 2017 at 11:32pm
Same problems that are beginning to destroy Juve are the same problems that have killed our nazionale, no surprise the players are often the same. The entitlement, arrogance, whining, complaining to the referees and yes, the diving.

The dead league and the dead nazionale has taken its first steps to climbing out of its grave. FIGC is collapsing, and new blood must be brought in.

on the 20th November, 2017 at 9:03pm
When I watch Juventus, one major problem screams at me... the player's attitude! The arrogance & lack of humility is impossible to rationalise. We think we can just turn up & roll over the opposition with minimum or no effort. Fight for every minute & more often than not quality will win out, but we have no fight & that is totally unacceptable. Our players are sulking & feeling sorry for themselves & need to be called out. Dybala is a ghost & I very much doubt he'll be in Turin next season.
on the 20th November, 2017 at 8:38pm
@mez: Many Juve fans (and think many of the players too) don't care about the Scudetto. We've won it enough; the thrill is long gone. We WANT the CL trophy, and that we're failing that again is the big deal for us.
on the 20th November, 2017 at 8:12pm
He he he he, it is always comical to read Susy's biased reviews on this site. It is so obvious when she gives a half-arsed appraisal for Inter's successful campaign so far. But yes, Icardi is scoring a lot but the main man for our good results this season is Spalletti and then Skrinjar.
on the 20th November, 2017 at 7:16pm
As usual, when Icardi scores, Inter is dependent on him , when he doesn't score, he's in crisis. It seems there's no way he can get it right.
on the 20th November, 2017 at 6:08pm
Very Impressive that when Inter wins it is only because of Mauro Icardi. He scored the goals, assisted himself, defended all of Atalanta attacks and even coached the entire team. World class Strikers score goals. They score lots of goals. Icardi has been in the league for a while now and ANY team would utilize his skill set as often as possible. Even more interesting that other teams are more balanced but Inter is one of two teams that have not been defeated all season and held Napoli.
on the 20th November, 2017 at 4:56pm
We will win the title this year. Forza napoli
on the 20th November, 2017 at 3:50pm
Why so anti Inter? Be objective and honest, Inter played a solid game and yes Icardi is very important to Inter but if he didnt play yesterday, Inter would have still found a way to win. This team is growing and put your dislike aside and be objective cos you look biased and you have no credibility.
on the 20th November, 2017 at 3:26pm
Juve can kiss the title goodbye this year.
on the 20th November, 2017 at 10:52am
Susy, its ok to acknowledge that Inter are playing well and taking nothing for granted. Its ok to praise a team. It doesn't hurt. Please try it sometime :P
on the 20th November, 2017 at 10:31am

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