22 September 2014 22:10
Juventus will be out to continue their strong start under new boss Massimiliano Allegri when they host Cesena in Serie A on Wednesday.
Allegri took over from Antonio Conte in the off-season, tasked with following the act of a man who had delivered three consecutive Scudetti.
After his tenure at Milan ended in an unceremonious departure following a poor run of results last season, doubts were raised in some quarters over whether Allegri would succeed in Turin, but general director Giuseppe Marotta made public his support for the coach on Monday.
Marrotta’s praise is backed up by the facts; Allegri has begun in fine fashion, boasting a 100 per cent record in three Serie A matches this season, all won without conceding a goal.
The most impressive of these came on Saturday as Allegri returned to his former club and came away from San Siro with a 1-0 victory, courtesy of Carlos Tevez’s 71st-minute winner.
It was the Argentinian’s fourth goal in three matches, following his effort in the 2-0 win over Udinese and his brace in their UEFA Champions League success over Malmo, by the same scoreline.
Tevez will be hopeful of continuing that scoring run on Wednesday, while regular strike partner Fernando Llorente is yet to get off the mark.
The game also provides Juve with a chance to extend their remarkable home record, with the Turin giants boasting 20 consecutive league victories at Juventus Stadium, with their last Serie A defeat there coming against Sampdoria in January 2013.
The visitors, meanwhile, are looking to continue their solid start to the campaign after gaining promotion from Serie B in 2013-14.
Pierpaolo Bisoli’s men have four points from their first three outings back in the top flight, thanks to a 1-0 win over Parma and a 2-2 draw at home with Empoli on Saturday.
Bisoli was unhappy with the officiating in that encounter as the visitors were handed what he thought was a controversial penalty to halve the deficit after Guido Marilungo and Gregoire Defrel had put them two goals to the good.
In their last outing away from Stadio Dino Manuzzi, Cesena were comfortably beaten 3-0 by Lazio, and they will have their work cut out if they are to pick up their first away point of the season on Wednesday.
Cesena continue to have concerns over Giuseppe De Feudis, Andrea Tabanelli, Nico Pulzetti and Riccardo Cazzola, who are all continuing their recovery from injuries.
For Juve, Martin Caceres has suffered a hyperextension of his hamstring and is unlikely to feature, while Andrea Pirlo remains a doubt with a similar problem.