5 Biggest Threats to a Juventus Repeat Triumph in Serie A
Although Juventus seem like clear favourites to retain the Serie A title this season, there are a few things that could threaten the club's bid for a repeat.
Title contenders, no matter how much of a favourite they may be, have to navigate through the lows as well as the highs, just like their competition.
Juventus surprised teams last year and kept going strong as the season progressed, and though things have started off well this season, it will be much more difficult this time around.
Here are five things that could threaten Juventus' chances to repeat as Serie A champions.
No Antonio Conte on the Sidelines
To be fair, Massimo Carrera has been very solid with his work on the sidelines so far and has guided the club to an undefeated start.
Carrera hasn't made any decisions that have had a negative impact on his squad during games, and that is down to the game-plan he and general manager Antonio Conte create while preparing for the next fixture.
Still, things would be easier with Conte back on the sidelines, as there is no telling how Carrera could react, even with a game-plan, in an extremely important fixture.
One thing that could stop any club, regardless of how dominant they may seem, is a rash of injuries. Juventus did some very good work in the transfer market and has solid depth throughout the squad.
Still, should a number of players, whether key players or rotation, go down for an extended period of time, the Old Lady could be in trouble.
Last season, Juventus only had to deal with domestic competitions, but now they face the Champions League as well.
Playing in all those games will test the players' fitness and will be even more of an issue the longer they stay in European competition.
Added Pressure of Champions League
As mentioned in the previous slide, Juventus will be dealing with both continental and domestic competition this season.
The Turin club were once a major force in the European game and have the quality necessary for a long run in the tournament.
If the club gets a draw that enables it to make such a run, it will be interesting to see how that is navigated.
Having to deal with that competition plus domestic play will have an effect on both the staff and the players as the season progresses.
Form and Collaboration of Key Players
While Juventus have plenty of bodies in their squad, they do not have the quality to replace a player should they go through a bad patch of form.
The midfield three are especially important here, we all know about Andrea Pirlo, but the defenders and the attackers have to be at their best.
Playing three at the back allows two players to cover for one in case of a bad game, or run of bad games, but against good opposition, the pressure will eventually tell.
The varying roles that the two forwards have means that if one of the two is off his game, and the replacement doesn't fare much better, then Juventus could struggle for goals as they did last year.
Other Serie A Title Contenders
Last, but not least, are the other title-challengers. Napoli have kept pace with Juventus so far and show no signs of stopping.
Sampdoria are also unbeaten, but it remains to be seen how long they can keep it up. Inter Milan and Lazio are in the running as well, and, as a courtesy, Roma and Milan can be thrown in the mix as well.
The strongest challenges are likely to come from Napoli and an Inter Milan team with too much experience and talent not to be in the thick of things in the end.
Anything can happen in a long football season, and while Juventus will be expected to set the bar, they may not find it easy at all.
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