Juventus vs Udinese 2-0: Dybala and McKennie Shine

Paulo Dybala and Weston McKennie shone in Juventus’ 2-0 win against Udinese, with both midfielders netting a goal.

The Bianconeri controlled every phase of the match. The hosts’ defense was in incredible form, allowing its opponents minimal opportunities to score. Both halves were remarkably similar, as Juventus dominated time on the ball and scored once in each.

After Federico Chiesa tore his ACL in Juventus’ clash with Roma, Massimiliano Allegri started Weston McKennie in the Italian’s usual spot on the left wing. The manager also deployed Moise Kean as the formation’s striker, and Alvaro Morata began the match on the bench.

New Udinese manager Gabriele Cioffi ran out a 3-5-2, with Rodrigo Becao noticeably absent from the backline. His longtime cohort, Samir, was also gone after being sent to partner club Watford in the transfer window. At forward, Beto and Gerard Deulofeu joined forces, providing a genuine attacking threat for the Zebrette.

Unsurprisingly, the Bianconeri controlled possession from the start of the match. The visitors were content to drop deep and defend, looking to spark counter attacks with long balls over the top. Udinese’s pair of forwards pressed high against the Juventus backline, with Deulofeu playing in between the lines as the second striker.

However, Juventus’ offense soon overwhelmed their opponents when Kean, receiving the ball at the top of the box, played a beautiful one-touch pass to Paulo Dybala. The number ten broke behind the defense and easily chipped goalkeeper Daniele Padelli for the opening goal.

Later, the attacking onslaught continued as Luca Pellegrini played a long-range cross to McKennie. The American created some space in the box and put his head on the ball, but he missed the net by a wide margin.

Udinese responded, finally managing their first shot on target after 35 minutes. Beto found himself in space and ripped a ferocious strike from outside the box, but the attempt failed to challenge Wojciech Szczesny.

By the time the whistle blew for the first time, Juventus had outclassed Udinese, controlling 72% of possession.

At the start of the second half, Allegri made three surprising changes. Apparently worried by the one goal lead, he replaced Arthur, Pellegrini and Dejan Kulusevski with Mattia De Sciglio, Federico Bernadeschi and Manuel Locatelli.

With 25 minutes remaining, Dybala nearly netted a brace. The midfielder combined with McKennie outside the box, quickly bypassing oncoming defenders. However, his shot bounced just wide of the net, and the score remained unchanged.

Later, Udinese found space on the wings to create chances. Unable to play through Juventus’ compact defensive midfield, the visitors were forced to whip in cross after cross, the majority of which were aimed at Beto’s head.

With Juventus looking to regain control, McKennie whiffed on another prime scoring chance. De Sciglio sent in a high-floating cross to the midfielder, who was open in the box. However, he again missed an open header, sending the ball wide from just four yards out.

The American soon redeemed himself. After another brilliant cross from De Sciglio, McKennie nodded the ball into the corner of the net, sealing the game for the hosts.