In the weekend that saw Juventus confirmed as champions Dave Taylor picks his 11 best performers from Serie A.
Pavol Bajza [Parma]
With less than 180 minutes of Serie A football over the last two seasons the 22-year-old Czech bounced through the match, returning everything and was especially alert palming Manolo Gabbiadini’s strike around the post.
Mattia Cassani [Parma]
As much right-winger as full-back he had more touches than anyone, including many deadly crosses. Although he bombed forward numerous times he never forgot his number one job and did not allow Sampdoria an inch. Inexhaustible.
Gabriel Paletta [Parma]
Has shown all season why he should be picked for Brazil, especially in this match where he controlled the game from the centre of defence with elegance and determination. Reliable.
Gabriel Silva [Udinese]
Was always on the front foot and made inroads into the Livorno defence down the left flank. Always ready to relieve any pressure by giving his forwards another option and assisted the third goal while scoring the fourth. Commendable.
Juan Iturbe [Verona]
After burners, jet packs, turbo-chargers you name it the Argentinean youngster had it metaphorically strapped to his back. Shown some of his incredible pace and magic when running on to an ideal pass to perfectly slot home his goal. Inimitable
Mariano Izco [Catania]
Making the Roma defence feel a bit like a cyclist finally cracking under the intense pressure of a rival on some brutal mountain climb, his two stonking goals were more than he scored in his two previous seasons. Irrepressible.
Paul Pogba [Juventus]
The man of the match with an awesome range of skills including attacking and defending, sometimes in the same move. One particular highlight, amongst many, was his sublime back heel that led to Simone Padoin’s goal. Invincible.
Dries Mertens [Napoli]
The birthday boy celebrated with his sixth and Napoli’s opening goal from a penalty. Always ready to be an outlet on the left, he continuously made a nuisance of himself with his precision and intelligent moves. Indispensable.
Domenico Berardi [Sassuolo]
Following their brief upturn against Bologna, Fiorentina’s dead cat bounce flopped again. This time the teenager’s hat-trick helped them not so much to bounce, but plummet from Giotto’s Campanile straight through the open manhole, he prized open, into an ever-spinning cesspool. Incredible.
Gonzalo Bergessio [Catania]
A real gladiator and set up Izco’s second goal with a transcendent flick. Scored a superb goal himself when Morgan De Sanctis deflected Seb Leto’s strike and he was Johnny-on-the-spot to crack the loose ball home. Insatiable.
Keita Balde [Lazio]
Always caused problems with his awareness of the best move to make, which helped him score the opener after finding the most opportune spot. It also helped him set up Lucas Biglia for the second after some delightful exchanges between them. Unbelievable.
Special mentions Antonio Di Natale [Udinese], Omar El Kaddouri [Torino], Etrit Berisha [Lazio], Antonio Cassano [Parma], Goran Pandev [Napoli], Blerim Dzemaili [Napoli] Paulinho [Livorno], Pablo Barrientos [Catania].
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