Juventus Win 4th Straight Coppa Italia with 4-0 Win over AC Milan

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistMay 9, 2018

Juventus' defender from Italy Medhi Benatia (L) celebrates with teammate Juventus' forward from Argentina Paulo Dybala after scoring during the Italian Tim Cup (Coppa Italia) final Juventus vs AC Milan at the Olympic stadium on May 9, 2018 in Rome. (Photo by Tiziana FABI / AFP)        (Photo credit should read TIZIANA FABI/AFP/Getty Images)

Juventus retained the Coppa Italia after beating AC Milan 4-0 in the 2018 final at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome on Wednesday.

Two goals from defender Medhi Benatia, one from Douglas Costa and an own goal by Nikola Kalinic earned the Bianconeri a fourth straight cup win.


Arsenal Target Massimiliano Allegri Deserves to Be in Great Demand

One more emphatic win on a big stage, one more trophy. It's typical of Massimiliano Allegri's time in charge of Juventus.

Yet it's also why the 50-year-old will be in demand this summer. He has already been named as "one of the leading candidates" to succeed Arsene Wenger when the Frenchman leaves Arsenal this summer, per Kaveh Solhekol of Sky Sports News.

The Guardian's Paolo Bandini thinks Allegri, who also won Serie A with Milan in 2011, has nothing left to prove in Turin:

Paolo Bandini @Paolo_Bandini

This is not an inside line, just an observation, but I can see why Allegri would walk this summer if the right opportunity came his way. Outside of winning the Champions League, there's really very little left that he can prove with Juve.

Bandini also pointed out how Allegri deserves the plaudits for his fine work, despite Juve being in a strong position for success:

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Paolo Bandini @Paolo_Bandini

Four doubles in four years. What else is there? Nobody had even won the Coppa Italia more than twice in a row before him. Yes, he's been in charge at a time when Juventus are far ahead of the competition in terms of their structure & financial muscle. It's still unprecedented.

On this evidence, plenty of Gunners supporters would welcome the man who is on course for a fourth league and cup double in as many seasons with Juve.


Gianluigi Donnarumma Still a Long Way Off World's Best Goalkeepers

He's a teenage stopper who has been linked with a big-money move to Real Madrid, but Gianluigi Donnarumma still has a ways to go before he can be considered among the best at this position.

The 19-year-old made two costly errors to turn a 1-0 deficit into 3-0 in less than 10 minutes in Rome. In the 61st minute, he let a tame shot from Juve winger Douglas Costa bounce off him and nestle in the net.

Aaron West of Copa90 US had some sympathy for the youthful 'keeper:

Aaron West @ayyy_west

Damn. Poor Donnarumma. Love to see Juve score but hate to see it on the kid's shoulders like that.

Three minutes later, Donnarumma failed to make a clean catch when the ball deflected off Mario Mandzukic. His spill allowed Benatia to profit and put the cup firmly out of the Rossoneri's reach.

The two high-profile gaffes left one of Milan's brightest young things visibly distraught, per BT Sport's James Horncastle:

James Horncastle @JamesHorncastle

Feel for Donnarumma. Looked distraught at the end. Marco Storari and Bonucci consoling him. Hope he emerges stronger for it

Setbacks on such a big stage will dent Donnarumma's confidence. Yet they should also serve as a reminder that for all his natural ability, the precocious goalie still doesn't belong in the same bracket as Manchester United's David De Gea, Thibaut Courtois of Chelsea or Bayern Munich man Manuel Neuer.

How he responds to this realisation will determine how far Donnarumma eventually goes in his career.


Redemption for Benatia after Real Madrid Nightmare

Benatia may have felt he was due some joy after he gave away the penalty that led to Juventus' controversial exit from the UEFA Champions League at the hands of Real Madrid back in April.

Benatia made amends for his role in Juve's exit from the Champions League.
Benatia made amends for his role in Juve's exit from the Champions League.Alessandro Sabattini/Getty Images

His foul on Lucas Vazquez let Cristiano Ronaldo score the winner from the penalty spot deep into stoppage time, but only after goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has been sent off for his aggressive protests toward referee Michael Oliver.

He was the focus of infamy at the Santiago Bernabeu, but Benatia earned headlines for the right reasons in the Italian capital. The 31-year-old emphatically headed Juve in front 11 minutes after the restart following a turgid first half with little attacking intent from either side.

Eight minutes later, Benatia was on hand to turn the ball over the line after Donnarumma's costly spill.

The close-range finish kept Benatia's deadly recent run against the Rossoneri going, per OptaPaolo:

OptaPaolo @OptaPaolo

2 – Medhi Benatia has scored two of his four goals for Juventus (all competitions) against AC Milan. Favourite. #JuveMilan #TIMCupFinal

After his nightmare in Madrid, Benatia has recovered to define his season with fonder memories.


What's Next?

Juve and Allegri can seal a quartet of league and cup doubles if they avoid defeat in Roma. As for Milan, a win in Atalanta would go a long way toward sealing sixth place.

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