Juve ‘butterfly’, flop with Sassuolo: mistakes and Allegri in the first defeat

Disastrous Bianconeri between individual errors, collective blackouts and disappearing play

The usual Juventus of the last 2 years? Massimiliano Allegri’s Bianconeri fell badly against Sassuolo, suffering a very heavy 4-2 for their first defeat in the championship. The flop, peppered with an impressive series of errors, reopens the debate – perhaps not yet the ‘trial’ – on the quality of the squad and the management of the coach, called to redemption after two years characterized by disappointing results on average.

Juve, in Reggio Emilia, hurt themselves with gross errors. In goal, Szczesny actually gave the black and greens a goal and a half. The home team’s fourth goal was a ‘Never say goal’ style own goal by Gatti. In the middle, however, there is a performance that in some ways re-proposed a well-known script. Juve started with an aggressive attitude, Szczesny’s first duck broke the balance, which was restored in the 20th minute by Vina’s own goal. The next 70 minutes of the match, however, ring an alarm bell. Juve is not playing the Cups this year, they have a whole week available to prepare for a single match on a tactical, mental and athletic level.

Yet, he still manages to slip into long tunnels in which players who have obvious technical limitations get lost and in which leaders or presumed leaders also get lost. Sassuolo’s 2-1 goal, scored by Berardi, is a collective concentration of errors and horrors: the return of the Bianconeri to the defensive phase is a ramshackle retreat, each on their own and freedom for the Emilian captain to aim and kick.

The Old Lady’s offensive phase, at times favored by an aggressive attitude and organized pressing, often (always?) appears tied to the outbursts of individuals. Vlahovic had a chance and missed it. Chiesa, impeccable at the start of the season, signed the provisional 2-2, confirming himself as effective at extreme levels: 4 goals in 5 games. From the second equalizer, which arrived in the 78th minute, Juve essentially left the field. Sassuolo got their head back thanks to Szczesny’s second ‘almost gift’ and closed the score with Gatti’s harakiri in added time. “Too much euphoria,” Allegri had warned before the match. “We played a butterfly game,” he said at the end of the match. The coach anticipated a misstep that occurred. The fault of a squad that has holes and gaps is the established defense of the cheerful supporters. It is legitimate to ask, however, what should be the contribution of a coach who identifies the risks but evidently does not find corrections and countermeasures against opponents who are clearly inferior on paper.