Conor Clancy Date: 12th January 2019 at 10:39pm
Written by:

Five-in-a-row remains the objective for Juventus who started yet another Coppa Italia defence with a 2-0 win over Bologna that was beyond comfortable at the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara.

If the result was ever in question, and it probably wasn’t, that doubt was extinguished when Federico Bernardeschi was gifted an early opener for the Bianconeri.

What was nothing more than a hopeful punt into the box became what would be the game’s clearest chance as Angelo Da Costa crazily ran to the edge of his box and fell over his own teammate as he attempted to claim the ball, subsequently dropping it into the path of Bernardeschi who was left with a simple finish from 20-yards.

Leonardo Bonucci had a chance to make it 2-0 early but he fluffed his lines when he looked certain to convert a simple tap-in.

Perhaps the biggest surprise of the night was that it took until the second half for the Old Lady to double her lead as young forward Moise Kean pounced on a loose rebound to prod past Da Costa.

The Old Lady won without even starting the engine

Despite the narrow margin for much of the game, Juventus were in party mode from the first whistle and the result was never up for debate.

If Juve have won games in the past without needing to get out of first gear, then Saturday saw them breeze into the quarter-finals of the Coppa Italia without ever doing as much as turning the key to start the engine.

Douglas Costa spent his time on the ball appearing to mock the Rossoblu backline, performing needless stepovers and stopping dead in his tracks in an attempt to tease and lure them in, though it only worked on one occasion when he won a free-kick in the corner that ultimately came to nothing.

Leonardo Spinazzola played and, rather than target him and look to exploit his lack of freshness and familiarity in this Juventus side, Bologna instead opted to afford him the freedom of their right-hand flank to venture up and down as he pleased.

At 2-0 Massimiliano Allegri took the decision to introduce Cristiano Ronaldo for goalscorer Kean, in what was a needless switch and with Paulo Dybala following the Portuguese, it became clear that this was being treated as nothing more than a warm-up ahead of Serie A’s return.

Brutal Bologna show no signs of improvement

Roberto Soriano and Nicola Sansone arrived in Emilia-Romagna this winter but unless they become Serie A and European football’s best players before Serie A restarts, it’s hard to see how they will be able to keep to Rossoblu in the top flight.

Sanson, to his credit, tried tirelessly when he was given a sniff of possession but those moments were few and far between, not that he was helped by the ghost of what was a footballer in Mattia Destro, who accompanied him in attack.

Riccardo Orsolini and Rodrigo Palacio were second-half arrivals but Filippo Inzaghi’s problems were deeper-rooted than being changeable by their introductions.

With every passing game Inzaghi’s time in Bologna looks to be shortening and while this Coppa elimination coming at the hands of Juventus might buy him some time, it’s hard to escape the feeling that his days in the job are numbered.