Juventus have now kept eight clean sheets in a row, and that defensive solidity looks like it could carry them to a seventh consecutive Serie A title. You have to go back to November 11 for the last time they conceded, and that came against Sampdoria when they rested key defenders. They have not yielded a goal in more than 720 minutes of football, and they have not exactly been playing against toothless attacks.
During this run of clean sheets, Juventus have faced Barcelona, Napoli and Roma. Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Dries Mertens and Edin Dzeko have all failed to breach this Juventus backline, and that is ominous for Juventus’ domestic rivals.
Juventus’ last six title victories have all been based on defensive solidity as the fabled backline of Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci and Andrea Barzagli repelled all attackers, with Gianluigi Buffon a solid presence behind them. But that legendary defence was broken up in the summer when nouveau riche AC Milan signed Bonucci in a deal worth around €40 million. It looked to be the end of an era of defensive meanness for Juventus as they started leaking goals in his absence. They fell behind Napoli in the title race, but kept within a reasonable distance of Maurizio Sarri’s side thanks to their attacking strength.
Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuain are two of the best strikers in the world and Juventus are the top scorers in Serie A this season. However, several defences were in better form than them. That is no longer the case. Juventus have now conceded just 14 goals in 18 games, and only Napoli (13) and Roma (11) can beat that. But with the way Juventus are playing at the moment, it seems like only a matter of time before they will once again own the league’s best defensive record.
Former Roma and Bayern Munich defender Medhi Benatia has slotted in nicely alongside Chiellini and Barzagli and seems to be constantly improving. Arsenal reportedly bid £35 million for the Moroccan this week, but the offer was instantly refused. Juventus have found a strong heir to Bonucci and have no desire to break up another excellent defence.
They travel to Verona for their next game and will fancy their chances of keeping a ninth consecutive clean sheet. Newly promoted Verona are second from bottom in the table and have scored just 17 goals in 18 games this season. The game pits a weak attack against an exceptional defence, so Juventus to win to nil looks like a really good option. Bet Victor is offering 20/23 on this, which looks like a great price when you consider how well Juventus have been defending.
Juventus to win to nil was a great bet last season and would have made you a strong profit if you had continued to back it. It rarely came in at the start of the new campaign while they were adjusting to life after Bonucci, but it looks like a strong bet going forward. Napoli are still one point clear at the top of the table, but Juventus beat them 1-0 recently and should be able to overhaul them in the second half of the season.
Max Allegri’s now look a great bet to win Serie A. You can get 11/8 with Sun Bets and 11/10 with Paddy Power, Bet Victor, Sky Bet and Bet Stars on Juventus winning the league and that looks an excellent price. Napoli’s squad is not as strong or deep and Juventus have that crucial experience when it comes to getting over the line at the business end of the season, so they look a great option to make it seven titles in a row.