Juventus beats Genoa 1-0 to trail Napoli by one point

Paolo Rattini  GettyImages

There is one game left of the Serie A weekend and it is a big one.

"What was important was to win", Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri said.

In December, Juventus were victorious over Genoa in the Coppa Italia. Through the opening exchanges Juve were exposing the visitors down both flanks with good movement by Douglas Costa, but the half chances were not converted.

Genoa could have been 2-0 down before the half-hour mark if it were not for goalkeeper Mattia Perin, who denied Pjanic a goal from a thumping shot.

Genoa were proving a tough nut to crack and remained disciplined in their collective defending, they were even showing growing confidence in their own possession of the ball.

Douglas Costa scored in the 16th minute, the first conceded by Genoa in five league matches. Costa's perfectly timed run allowed him to place the ball first time past the despairing dive of Perin, to give Juve the lead - It was the Brazilian striker's second goal of the season.

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However, Davide Ballardini has lost just once in eight league matches since taking the reins in November, and is on offer at 14/1 (15.00) to mastermind a shock victory at the home of the champions.

Juventus have beaten Genoa twice already in the 2017/2018 campaign.

Gianluigi Buffon was again ruled out with a calf injury, but though he has been out of action since December 1, Allegri said the goalkeeper will be back in training in the week ahead.

Juventus kept pressing for the second goal, while their opponents struggled to cause much damage, particularly as a handful of the team's passes into the area were sloppy.

The American online entertainment service was handed access to Juventus players for the current season, with the documentary set to show Serie A matches, action from the training pitch and a behind-the-scenes look inside Allegri s dressing room.

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