Juventus dominated the game from the first minute, but Bologna could have gotten something out of it. The away side struggled to create chances in the first half, and two of the goals should have been avoided.
As expected, Rodrigo Palacio was not deemed fit to play, and in his place came Orji Okwonkwo. Andrea Poli came back into the midfield after his suspension at the expense of Nagy, while M’baye also came back into the team after his short stint on the sidelines.
The first half was defined by Juventus dominance. They kept most of the possession, but they were not able to create a lot of chances. Donsah got a huge chance on the counter with a shot from just outside the box, but his shot didn’t have enough power to trouble Szczesny.
Then, Juventus got a freekick from the edge of the penalty area, which Pjanic curled over the wall and into the back of the net. Questionable goalkeeping by Mirante, who really should have saved it. Not long after, Mandzukic was played trough by Pjanic and the striker slotted the ball into the net with ease.
The third goal as well should have been avoided. Helander didn’t put his foot through a clearance, and Matuidi scored with a thumping volley. Bologna struggled to create chances in the second half, as Juventus seemed happy with their three goal lead. Juventus could have extended that lead late in the second half, as both Dybala and Higuain had chances alone with Mirante.
What we learned:
First of all, Bologna made a lot of mistakes in this game. Two goals came from mistakes, and the game was characterized by misplaced passes from Bologna. By all means, Juventus is a great team, and one that should beat Bologna because of the quality they possess. However, they weren’t that impressive in this game, and hence Bologna could have gotten something out of the game. Then to give them two goals is unforgivable, but these kind of mistakes have happened regularly this season. Donadoni needs to find a way to rid his team of the tendency to make these kinds of mistakes.
Building on the mistakes, do we need to talk about the need for Donadoni to bench Mirante and give Da Costa a chance? Mirante has looked a bit shaky of late. He has got great reflexes, but his decision-making has been bad when it comes to crosses, freekicks, corners and so on. He should have saved Juventus’ first goal, and that goal set the tone of the match, as they hadn’t really created any huge chances up until that point. Da Costa did well when he got called upon during Mirante’s injury earlier in the season, and it may be time for him to be given another chance.
Adam Masina: No player stood out in the game, and it was therefore difficult to single out a man of the match performance. Masina was good going forward, and he defended well. He is therefore my pick for best Rossoblù. He has struggled at times this season, and he was benched for a game not to long ago, so for him to play as well as he did despite a terrible overall team performance is a positive to take from this game. Let’s hope that he can build on this going forward.
Next game is on Friday at Chievo. Chievo is a tough opponent, but Bologna should be aiming to win that game. After a couple of bad results against stronger teams, the need for three points is growing.
What did you think of the result? Let us know in the comments below.
Photo: Bologna FC