x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Pressure grows on Juventus coach after Bolonga defeat

Marco Di Vaio scores twice against his old club as Luigi Delneri's attacking gamble backfires at the Stadio Olimpico.

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TURIN // Marco Di Vaio returned to haunt his former club Juventus by scoring both goals in an impressive Serie A win for Bologna at the Stadio Olimpico.

He struck in the 49th and 66th minutes to inflict the eighth defeat on Juve this season and increase the pressure on their coach Luigi Delneri while taking the Emilian side into a comfortable mid-table position.

Juve’s second loss in a row, coming after defeat by the same score line at Lecce last weekend, leaves the Bianconeri three points adrift of the top five and struggling for a place in Europe next season.

The first 45 minutes were largely uneventful with the only moment of danger arriving in the 43rd minute when Vincenzo Iaquinta hit the post as the ball bounced around the penalty area.

Both sides struggled to make their mark on the game and Delneri’s reaction at half-time was a bold one.

He brought Alessandro Del Piero and Luca Toni on for the second-half, playing with four forwards in a bid to open the game up.

The move worked, but not exactly how he had planned it.

Di Vaio put the visitors in front in the 49th minute when he beat the offside trap to latch onto Mutarelli’s finely-weighted pass and lift the ball over Marco Storari just before Giorgio Chiellini could recover.

Juve did create a good chance to level in the 65th minute when Leonardo Bonucci met Del Piero’s free kick at the far post, but he could not get enough on the ball, despite beating Bologna goalkeeper Emiliano Viviano, to nudge it across the goalmouth, and Miguel Britos cleared the danger.

Within a minute, Di Vaio added the second.

He picked up the ball to the left of the penalty area and dribbled in past both Bonucci and Zdenek Grygera before beating Storari inside his near post.

The fans vented their frustration and Delneri gambled again with Simone Pepe coming on as a fifth forward instead of the fullback Grygera.

However, it was a defender, Bonucci, who came the closest to scoring when his header went just inches wide of the post from a corner.

A goal-line clearance from Daniele Portanova in the 84th minute summed up Juve’s day as he prevented Toni from grabbing a consolation for the hosts.