Weston McKennie once again found the net for Juventus in a losing effort, this time to underdogs Hellas, while Venezia’s pair of Yanks both went the distance to earn a point at Genoa.
Hellas Verona 2 – 1 Juventus
Juventus extended their winless run in Serie A to three games, this time failing to fight back from an early two-goal deficit at the hands of Hellas, and settling for a shocking loss on the road on Saturday.
Weston McKennie initially started the game on the bench for head coach Massimiliano Allegri ahead of their upcoming midweek Champions League clash with Zenit, however was brought into the action in the 57th minute in an effort to turn the tide.
The hosts had already put their stamp on the game inside of 15 minutes, with Argentinean attacker Giovanni Simeone cleaning up an initially blocked strike from Antonin Barák at the ten-minute mark, then hitting a wonder-strike from just outside the left corner of the area four minutes later.
Paolo Dybala came close to scoring an eye-popper of his own in just over one minute before the halftime whistle, however his looping shot from range bounced off the far end of the crossbar.
While Allegri trusted his initial intuition and didn’t make any changes at the half, he did eventually call upon his bench shortly before the hour mark, Bringing McKennie and Manuel Locatelli in place of the disappointing Adrien Rabiot and Rodrigo Bentacur to inject some life into the midfield.
His move paid off and handed his team a lifeline, with the young American pulling one back in the 80th. Giorgio Chiellini hit Brazilian outside back Danilo on the right, who advanced a few steps before firing a forward pass to the feet of McKennie at the edge of the area. The Texan took the ball on the turn and thumped a blazing shot just under the crossbar for 2-1.
Juventus pushed for an equalizer in the final minutes, with Alvaro Morata coming close in 82nd and Dybala forcing a save at the end of regulation, however the hosts held on for the surprising victory.
The result sees Juve drop to ninth place, several places back of league’s European spots. They continue their busy schedule with the visit from Zenit on Tuesday, followed by a home clash against Fiorentina four days later.
Genoa 0 – 0 Venezia FC
Tanner Tessmann earned his first Serie A start while Gianluca Busio put in his typical 90-minute shift in the thick of Venezia’s attack, as they earned a point on the road at Genoa.
With Ethan Ampadu serving a suspension following his midweek red card, Tessmann was handed the start in midfield alongside Busio, his first since arriving in Italy, and put in a solid shift with an 81% completion rate and a pair of shots towards the Genoa goal.
Genoa dominated the contest throughout, holding possession for 63% of the time and edging the shot total by a margin of 19 to six, however were unable to break through a resolute defensive wall set up by their visitors.
On-loan defender Mattia Caldara gave Venezia their best two chances to steal a win, putting two headers on target, the first off of a corner in the 53rd minute then again right minutes from time following a free kick, however Genoa keeper Salvatore Sirigu did his job to keep his team in the game.
In the end, the final whistle blew after five minutes of added time, with each team earning a well-deserved point.
Venezia remain in 16th place, one point above the relegation places, with a difficult home matchup against the Cirque du Mourinho on Sunday.
Bryan Reynolds did not suit up for Roma’s 2-1 loss against visiting AC Milan. The result leaves Roma in fifth place in Serie A, with only one win from their last four in league play. They host Bodø/Glimt on Thursday in Europa Conference League play looking to redeem themselves for the 6-1 loss at the hands of the Norwegians two weeks ago, then visit Venezia on Sunday.
Andrija Novakovich and Frosinone will be in action on Monday night against Crotone in Serie B action.
Giuseppe Barone will hope for his first appearance of the season when Ascoli visits Pisa on Monday night.