‘The Old Lady’ has ruled over Italian football almost unchallenged in the last five years. Trophies and titles have rained down on Turin, with Juventus also being the only Italian side to make an impact in Europe. Their confidence and brilliance has been clear for the world to see, but are there winds of change blowing through Italy? The new season sees new challenges to come for those in black and white stripes, but will there be a new champion?
In spite of Juventus’ 4 consecutive titles and champions league final finish last year, I think they may struggle this year. I see a mass of factors which could prove to be costly for the current title holders. Here are 5 reasons as to why Juventus will not win Serie A this season.
1. The midfield loss
For a big team to lose a first team player or two in a transfer window is not a large problem. Financial power buys them potentially even better replacements. Sometimes however, there are players and personalities who are simply just irreplaceable. Andrei Pirlo is definitely this sort of player. He defines greatness, having been successful at every stage of his career and entertaining fans throughout. His calm presence, exceptional vision and plethora of assists would be a miss to any team, but particularly to Juventus. This is because as well as Pirlo, they have also lost his midfield partner Arturo Vidal. The Chilean departed to Bayern Munich leaving a gaping hole in the centre of the midfield. Juventus have brought in Sami Khedira to replace these two but I can’t see this as being enough. There is certainly going to be a lot responsibility hanging on the already strained shoulders of Paul Pogba.
2. Worst start in Serie A history
For the first time Juventus lost their first two games of a Serie A season, making it their worst start ever in Serie A history. Losing by one goal in both a home game to Udinese and then away to main rivals Roma, sees Juventus currently placed 17th in the league. Two games obviously does not make a season, but compared to the last campaign the champions only lost 3 games, and not one was at the Juventus Stadium. Zero points from two games is not devastating for the side, but it will make retaining the title all the more difficult.
3. No Carlos Tevez
Carlos Tevez over the last couple of seasons has been nothing but indispensable for Juventus. In the league alone he has scored 39 goals in two seasons. A goal average to match some of the best strikers in world football. Opposition defenders will have breathed a sigh of relief seeing the Argentine leave for Boca Juniors this summer, as his presence has been massive in Serie A. Mario Manzukic, Paulo Dybala and Simone Zaza have all been brought in to add attacking options, and are some good signings on paper. Only time will tell if the new boys will have the desired effect at their new club. Regardless of the money spent on the new players however, Juventus will certainly miss Tevez.
Juventus’ problems are not just within Turin. The strength of their rivals are due to cause more problems than in previous seasons for the champions. Inter and AC Milan in particular have added a massive amount of quality over the transfer window, spending big money to get back to the top of Italian football. Players like Balotelli, Jovetic and Kondogbia have all moved to Milan bringing with it a rise in expectations at the San Siro for both clubs. Juventus’ most recent challengers in Rome have also had a positive transfer window. Not so much Lazio, but AS Roma have brought in some big signings who have made an instant impact. This proved by Edin Dzeko’s headed winner against Juventus in their last match. These four teams are sensing the weakness of Juventus, and i can definitely see the title going away from Turin, and to either Rome or Milan.
In both the last two seasons, Juventus have won the league by a massive 17 points. As well as this they won the Coppa Italia last season and the Supercoppa Italiana at the start of this. It would be easy for a team to become too comfortable with such a record. Their two losses at the start of this season support this view, and Massimiliano Allegri will be quick to try and stop this small run of defeats.
Do you think Juventus will win their 5th league title in a row? If not who do you think will win Serie A? Let me know what you think in the comments down below and thank you for reading!