Juventus vs Roma 1-1: Abraham Cancels Out Vlahovic’s Stunner

Juventus and Roma shared the spoils in Saturday’s mouth-watering Serie A showdown at the Allianz Stadium. Though the Bianconeri took the lead in the first half, the visitors replied beyond halftime to take home a valuable point.

Following a dismal scoreless draw at Sampdoria last weekend, Juventus were keen to bounce back on home turf and build on an emphatic 3-0 win over Sassuolo on the opening weekend. Star striker Dusan Vlahovic fired Massimiliano Allegri’s side to a flying start only two minutes into the game.

Vlahovic slotted home a sublime free-kick to give Juventus an early lead, setting the tone for an utterly dominant first-half display from the home team. The record-time Italian champions thought they doubled their advantage midway through the first half as Manuel Locatelli found the net in the 25th minute. 

However, their celebration was short-lived. After consulting with the side-pitch monitor, referee Massimiliano Irrati brought it back for Vlahovic’s handball in the build-up. A disallowed goal clipped Juventus’ wings only momentarily as they continued to create chances. 

After failing to capitalise on several decent opportunities in the first half, Juventus opted for a more conservative approach after the interview. As was often the case last season, Allegri dropped his troops back in a futile attempt to defend a slender lead. 

Roma struggled to create anything meaningful in the front third as former Juventus talisman Paulo Dybala still tries to click with Tammy Abraham. Yet, Jose Mourinho’s side made the most out of their only chance in the second half. 

Lorenzo Pellegrini whipped the ball in from a corner-kick with Abraham pouncing on Dybala’s return ball to draw Roma level and ensure a hard-earned 1-1 draw. In a true ‘Mourinho’ fashion, the Portuguese tactician pulled the Argentine forward off in favour of centre-back Marash Kumbulla only moments after.

Mourinho’s bid to secure the draw came to fruition as Juventus failed to respond in the remainder of the game. In the end, he was the happier of the two managers.

After a brace of 1-0 wins over Salernitana and Cremonese, a point in Turin was enough to keep Roma close to the top of the Serie A standings. Meanwhile, Juventus, who had won ten of their previous 11 top-flight H2Hs at the Allianz Stadium, will have to do much better if they are to improve on last season’s fourth-place finish.