A last-gasp Fernando Llorente goal against Udinese Calcio on Sunday secured a sixth straight Serie A win for Juventus, with the Old Lady clearly in no mood to surrender their title.
After levering unbeaten AS Roma off the top of Serie A last weekend, Juventus come into the new week in an even stronger position, thanks to their main rivals' 1-1 draw at Atalanta BC – a far cry from the trauma of 20 October when Juve threw away a 2-0 lead at ACF Fiorentina to lose 4-2. However, that defeat may have been the stimulus to the Turin side's current run.
Since that defeat in Florence, and a subsequent 2-1 UEFA Champions League loss at Real Madrid CF, Antonio Conte's side have won seven and drawn one in all competitions, scoring 18 goals and conceding just three – and tellingly none of those in Serie A. "The Florence defeat is like a wound which has yet to heal, but the boys have been extraordinary in reacting promptly to that debacle," said Conte as he reflected on his side's current run.
"We are doing something really excellent and we want to keep heading in this direction until the end," added the coach. "Don't forget that just three weeks ago Roma had a five-point advantage. This is what makes our league so beautiful, as every game can be an unexpected hurdle."
While Juventus were making it six wins in a row, in Bergamo Roma recorded their fourth successive draw, with the Giallorossi showing a lack of sharpness since captain Francesco Totti was ruled out. The 37-year-old may be fit to return before the end of the year, and his return cannot come soon enough for coach Rudi Garcia.
"He is a great player and such a humble man at the same time," said the Frenchman. "Despite his experience, he is still hungry and we all are missing his leadership on the pitch."
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