Italian football is almost synonymous with the age-old rivalry between the two Italian giants – Juventus and Inter. In one of the most happening Serie A season in ages, it’s time for the first Italian derby of Serie A 2017/18. The two age-old rivals will lock horns on Saturday at the Allianz Stadium aka Juventus Stadium in Turin from 20:45 CET (IST 01:15 Sunday).
Termed back in 1967 by Italian sports journalist Gianni Brera, the Derby d’ Italia or the Italian Derby features the two big teams from the two biggest cities in North West Italy. The reason for the coining of the term can be sighted as the match being the most intense one between two clubs from different cities in Italian football; it also has political implications with Milan and Turin, the two cities being the capitals of Lombardy and Piedmont regions respectively. The two cities have been mostly been ruled over by rival political parties. The rivalry started way back in 1961 when a match ruled in favour of Inter due to pitch invasion was withdrawn and ordered a replay. The then Inter chairman Angelo Moratti accused the Agnelli family influence and as a protest fielded a youth team. Juventus legend Omar Sivori scored 6 in that match, with Juventus winning 9-1.
Inter were denied a clear penalty against Juve in the 97-98 fixture when Juventus were leading by a goal. They won it by the same margin and went on to win the Scudetto that year. This started a political outrage in the Italian parliament.
The Calciopoli incident, which saw Juventus being stripped of their Scudetto and relegated to Serie B, enabled Inter to win their first league title since 1989, adding fuel to fire in the rivalry.
So far 236 matches have been played between the two with The Old Lady of Turin winning 107 times, 56 draws and The Vipers of Milan emerging victorious on 73 occasions.
Italian and Inter legend Giuseppe Meazza, 1961 Ballon d’ Or winner and Juve legend Omar Sivori, and Roberto Boninsegna are the joint all-time leading scorers in the fixture with 12 goals. While the former two has scored all the goals with their respective clubs, the later scored 9 in Black and Blue and 3 for the Black and Whites.
Juventus are way ahead in terms of trophies with a record 33 league titles to Inter’s 18. Juve has a total of 63 major trophies to Inter’s 39, where the Milanese have only bettered their rivals with 3 UCL to 2 and a solitary FIFA Club World Cup.
Juventus vs Inter Milan Current Season:
The current Serie A season sees the two arch rivals occupying two of the top three positions in the league with Inter at the top after 15 games.
Inter have looked a side reborn under new manager Luciano Spalletti and are the only unbeaten side in Europe this season (across all competitions). The 3-times European Champions have been one of the best defensive sides in both the league as well as the whole of Europe conceding just 10 in 15 matches. Inspired by their enigmatic captain Mauro Icardi, the Nerazzurri have scored 33 times with Maurito netting 16.
Juventus, on the other hand, have struggled a bit compared to last few seasons with surprising defeats against Lazio and Sampdoria. Nevertheless, they have been the best attacking side with 41 goals in 15 matches thanks to the irresistible Argentinian duo of Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala scoring 21 goals between them. But with the ageing centre-halves and Bonucci’s transfer to Milan, the Bianconeris have looked vulnerable at the back.
With 2 points separating the two at the top and with Napoli a point adrift of Inter in 2nd place, this match has Scudetto implications written all over it.
Juventus vs Inter Milan Team News:
The two teams are likely to field their respective best XIs on Saturday’s derby with a (most likely) offensive approach.
While the visitors are devoid of injury or suspension problems, the hosts will be without the service of their legendary goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon due to injury.
The defending champions also have concerns over the fitnesses of key players like Miralem Pjanic, Mario Mandzukic and Paulo Dybala.
Juventus vs Inter Milan Probable Lineups:
Juventus vs Inter Milan Key Players:
Massimiliano Allegri’s side will be without captain and goalkeeper Gigi Buffon and thus extra responsibility will fall on Polish keeper Wojciech Szczesny to deliver. Veteran defender Giorgio Chiellini will be marshalling the troops from the back, with midfielders Blaise Matuidi, Miralem Pjanic and Sami Khedira fighting the midfield battle. A returning Mario Mandzukic and top scorer Paulo Dybala will be looking to support Gonzalo Higuain upfront to look for goals.
The 2010 treble winners will be having a host of players who will be playing a crucial role. Ever reliable Samir Handanovic will be guarding the sticks as always. Milan Skriniar has been a revelation since joining from Sampdoria last summer and much will depend on him at the heart of the defence. The three central mid-fielders Borja Valero, Roberto Gagliardini and Matias Vecino will be instrumental in the midfield battle. Star attacker Ivan Perisic, along with partner Antonio Candreva, will as always be the main men to provide impeccable final balls and score screamers from time to time. Current Serie A top scorer Mauro Icardi will once again be the guy Spalletti will bank on for goals upfront.
Juventus vs Inter Milan Live Streaming:
The match will be telecast live on SONY TEN 1 from 01.15 am IST on Sunday(Saturday night). The match will also be streamed live on Sony LIV. However, for online streaming links, send a message to our official Facebook page.