Sampdoria v Juventus
There was a monster match in Italy on Sunday between two of the top six at the start of round 13.
Sampdoria began the round in sixth place in the Italian top flight, while Juve are second in Serie A.
Juventus have already lost twice this season. Barcelona beat them 3-0 in the Champions League, while Lazio ended the Bianconeri’s incredible home record with a 2-1 away win in October.
Since that Lazio loss, Juve had won five matches in a six-match unbeaten run.
But Sampdoria also arrived to the game in high spirits. Samp are also in a spot of good form with one defeat and five wins in their last six outings.
Where was Gigi Buffon?
When the Juventus team sheet was released, there was one name obviously missing from the XI.
Gigi Buffon wasn’t in the matchday squad, although there had been no reports of any injury.
When Max Allegri was asked about Buffon’s whereabouts before kick off, the Juve coach admitted the goalie was missing as he’s recovering from World Cup heartache.
Buffon saw his Italian international career come to a crashing halt last week when Sweden beat the Azzurri in a World Cup playoff.
Italy have failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time since 1958.
Allegri made the following pre-game comments before the Samp game:
(Andrea Barzagli and Gigi Buffon) are recovering from the disappointment. That’s after 15 days with the national team they spent a remarkable amount of physical energy and, most of all, mental energy. They would have gone to a sixth World Cup and it was a huge disappointment.
Gigi Buffon does not play for Juventus today as he recovers from World Cup heartache…
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— BT Sport Football (@btsportfootball) November 19, 2017