It is an intriguing time in Serie A, as a trio of Italian giants set on a path that will potentially lead them to great success in the future. While Juventus dominated last year having gone unbeaten throughout the entire campaign, there are foundations being laid in Milan from both the red and blue halves to rival them in years to come.
The facts speak for themselves when asking who the best team in Italy is at this moment in time. The Bianconeri sit nine points clear at the top of the table as they search for back-to-back titles, despite having the additional stress of contending with a European schedule having reached the Champions League quarter-finals.
In Antonio Conte, they have one of the brightest tacticians in the game, and he has demonstrated his tactical nous on countless occasions whilst instilling the passion from his playing days into his current squad.
The 43-year-old has become a popular target around Europe but has maintained his desire to remain in Turin, and he will be vital to their future aspirations.
With a mix of experience, quality and youthful exuberance, Juventus have ensured that they will remain at the top for the foreseeable future. They still have the cornerstones of the club in place whilst adding pieces to the puzzle as they move forward, and as the squad continues to be strengthened they show little sign of their position at the top being weakened.
The strongest challenge to their dominance will perhaps arise from a resurgent AC Milan. Having kept faith in coach Massimiliano Allegri earlier in the season after enduring a tumultuous start to the campaign, the Rossoneri have stormed up the table and are still unbeaten in Serie A this year.
Following the departure of countless club icons last summer and the one before, the Milan hierarchy have embarked on a brave, albeit necessary, new path to refresh the squad and put themselves in a position to challenge in the long-term.
Few would have predicted their rapid ascent this season, but with the likes of Stephan El Shaarawy, Mario Balotelli and Mattia De Sciglio representing the face of the new Milan, they continue to make a conscious effort to add youth to their squad.
Based on their strategy and the current results they are enjoying, many at the club will be eyeing a Scudetto push next season, and will likely provide the biggest threat to Juventus moving forward.
Despite faltering slightly as of late, Inter have also adopted a new strategy as they attempt to rebuild an ageing squad.
Their ambitions appeared to be on track earlier this season, as they emerged as a genuine title contender following their win in Turin to end Juventus' unbeaten streak.
However, despite falling off the pace and question marks being raised over their plan, club owner Massimo Moratti has backed young coach Andrea Stramaccioni but there are still rumours that he will be replaced at the end of the season, as reported by Football-Italia.net.
Similarly to their city rivals, the Nerazzurri have looked at younger prospects to provide a refreshing new outlook. Mateo Kovacic and Fredy Guarin have shown promise to support the new plan, but there is still a lot of work to be done in the summer to replace the likes of Diego Milito and Walter Samuel.
Moratti will as ever provide his coach with a transfer war-chest to further strengthen the squad in the summer, but for now much will depend on their ability to capture a place in next season's Champions League.
It remains to be seen what the impact of missing out on a place at Europe's top table next season will have, both financially and on the pitch for the leading teams in Italy. Milan are currently in the driving seat along with Juve and Napoli, but there is plenty of time left for things to change.
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