Preview: Bologna vs Juventus – Team News, Lineups & Prediction

The final game of the penultimate Serie A round pits Bologna and Juventus against each other in Monday’s top-four six-pointer. There’s nothing but goal difference to separate the sides ahead of the kick-off.

A third-place finish is, therefore, up for grabs. Bologna scored twice inside the opening 15 minutes on the road for only the second time across the last 65 Serie A seasons to dispatch dethroned champions Napoli in the previous round. 

That result sealed Rossoblu’s remarkable Champions League qualification with two games to spare, taking their seasonal points record to 67. Only in 1963/64, when they won the title, Bologna bettered this tally in the three-point-per-win era. 

With their confidence skyrocketing, Bologna will be out to pour more misery on Juventus, a side determined to hire their coach Thiago Motta this summer. Bianconeri sacked long-serving boss Massimiliano Allegri on Friday, only two days after hoisting their first title since 2021.

Dusan Vlahovic’s early opener inspired Juventus to a narrow 1-0 win against Atalanta in Wednesday’s Coppa Italia final. But that wasn’t enough to save Allegri’s job amid fans’ unrest. The Turin giants have appointed Paolo Montero as a caretaker boss until the end of the season.

Match Preview

Bologna

It’s been a memorable season for Bologna, whose head coach is the leading candidate to fill the managerial vacancy at the Allianz Stadium. Motta has transformed perennial mid-table tenants into a team to beat in Serie A, especially at Stadio Renato Dall’Ara. 

Only uncontested champions Inter have amassed more home points than Bologna’s 40 this season (W12, D4, L2). Only Inter and Milan have beaten Motta’s side at this venue, highlighting the hosts’ confidence ahead of this fixture that’s historically not been kind to them.

You’d need to go back to 2011 for the last time Bologna celebrated victory against Juventus in Serie A. But their rich vein of form in Emilia-Romagna suggests now is the time for a change of scenery. Motta’s lads have won 12 of their last 16 competitive home outings (D3, L1).

With 11 of those 12 wins coming ‘to nil,’ Bologna’s potential opener could put this game beyond Juventus’ reach. Adding to this sentiment, they’re the only Serie A club this season yet to concede double digits on home turf, capitulating just nine times in 18 league matches here.

Juventus

Fresh off their Coppa Italia success, Juventus return to Serie A, searching for their first league win since early April. Adrien Rabiot’s last-gasp equalizer salvaged a 1-1 draw against basement boys Salernitana last weekend, extending Binaconeri’s underwhelming league run to five straight stalemates. 

Winning on the road has proved particularly challenging for the Turin outfit. Since a 3-0 demolition of Lecce in January, they have won none of their last seven away league games (D4, L3), netting under 1.5 goals on five occasions. However, Dall’Ara has been a happy hunting ground for Juventus.

They have claimed seven victories on their last eight Serie A visits to Bologna (D1). Extending that run with another triumph would likely produce a tight scoreline, not least because five of Juventus’ eight away league wins this season have yielded a one-goal margin.

Juventus would be well-advised to fly out of the traps as their hosts have only conceded one second-half goal in 18 Serie A home fixtures this season. The problem is the visitors have only scored 11 first-half goals on their top-flight travels thus far.

Team News

In addition to long-term absentee Adama Soumaoro and captain Lewis Ferguson, Bologna will be without sought-after forward Joshua Zirkzee. Motta will probably turn to Jens Odgaard to replace the highly-rated Dutchman, while Kacper Urbanski should fill the Scotland international’s shoes.

As for Juventus, Paul Pogba is the only definite absentee. Nicolo Fagioli is back from a lengthy ban, while Mattia De Sciglio could make the bench after returning to training. It’s uncertain whether Montero would alter Allegri’s famous 3-5-2, but Vlahovic and Federico Chiesa should start anyway.

Bologna vs Juventus Potential Lineups

Bologna (4-2-3-1): Lukasz Skorupski; Stefan Posch, Jhon Lucumi, Riccardo Calafiori, Victor Kristiansen; Remo Freuler, Michel Aebischer; Riccardo Orsolini, Kacper Urbanski, Dan Ndoye; Jens Odgaard. 

Juventus (3-5-2): Wojciech Szczesny; Danilo, Federico Gatti, Gleison Bremer; Andrea Cambiaso, Adrien Rabiot, Weston McKennie, Fabio Miretti, Filip Kostic; Dusan Vlahovic, Federico Chiesa. 

Bologna vs Juventus Prediction

No one would dare to bet against Bologna at Dall’Ara this season. Despite the managerial shift, there’s a feeling a draw would be their maximum as we back the hosts for success.

Prediction: Bologna Win

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