Monday January 20 2014
Serie A Team of Week 20

Following a weekend where the top two emphasised their qualities, Dave Taylor picks his best XI of Week 20.

Mattia Perin [Genoa]

Certainly does not have the strongest defence in front of him and was consequently tested for the whole game. Yet the one-man wall still pulled off save after save and thanks to him Genoa took the points. Single-minded.

Mehdi Benatia [Roma]

The Moroccan was supreme and Paulinho may have as well not turned up. As always anticipated danger before it happened and made defending look easy with a fabulous 97 per cent accuracy in his passes. Resolute.

Alessandro Lucarelli [Parma]

The veteran defender was on top form once again and showed his worth with a crucial blocking of a powerful Dejan Lazarevic strike. Apart from that he won the points with a last minute goal. Indomitable.

Luca Antonelli [Genoa]

Absolutely solid in defence yet got up field on several occasions and while having a shot blocked he also put in a couple of dangerous crosses. Going up for a set piece his header made sure Genoa beat Inter. Determined.

Adem Ljajic [Roma]

The Man of the Match had his fingers in every pie and played a crucial part in Mattia Destro’s opener. Also had another couple of blasts before he scored with a dynamic and precise right-footer. Vibrant.

Kevin Strootman [Roma]

Completely dominated the midfield and almost scored twice before his progressive efforts were rewarded with the second goal. Lining up his shot he screamed a low ball into the bottom corner. Unrelenting.

Arturo Vidal [Juventus]

Opened the scoring with a clever flick and absolutely ruled the midfield with his constant probing and runs. Then just before half-time won and converted a penalty as he became Serie A’s third top scorer on 10. Persistent.

Paul Pogba [Juventus]

Always in the mix, had a couple of efforts on goal himself and set up Vidal for his first before scoring with a 25-yard blast that had bad intentions written all over it. Purposeful.

Alessandro Matri [Fiorentina]

Mitri-Matri could not have asked for a better debut setting up the opener for Mati Fernandez. Three minutes later he guided home Manuel Pasqual’s cross into the box before sealing a perfect day by being first to a rebound. Refreshing.

Rolando Bianchi [Bologna]

A Man of the Match performance and in only his 10th start he repaid his Coach’s confidence with the headed opener from a dynamic Alessandro Diamanti cross. He continued to cause problems before deservedly equalising at the death. Invigorating.

Antonio Cassano [Parma]

Like one his predecessors Gianfranco Zola you can never allow him a moment’s grace. First he screams in a right-footed shot from outside the box then his Zola-like back-heel flick released Lucarelli for the winner 2-1. Exhilarating.

Special mentions: Miralem Pjanic [Roma], Gervinho [Roma], Kwadwo Asamoah [Juventus],

Romulo [Verona], Alessandro Diamanti [Bologna], Manuel Pasqual [Fiorentina], Mati Fernandez [Fiorentina], Ciro Immobile [Torino].

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