Salernitana 0-3 Juventus: Vlahovic stars as resurgent Bianconeri bounce back

By Sports Desk February 07, 2023

Juventus returned to winning ways in Serie A after Dusan Vlahovic scored two and assisted the other in a comfortable 3-0 victory at Salernitana on Tuesday.

Massimiliano Allegri's side, seemingly shaken by their 15-point deduction, had not won any of their previous three league games but responded with a dominant performance at Stadio Arechi.

Vlahovic's 28th-minute penalty set the visiting Bianconeri on their way before the Serbia international fortuitously assisted compatriot Filip Kostic on the stroke of half-time.

Star man Vlahovic added his second after 47 minutes as victory moved a resurgent Juve up to 10th, albeit some 13 points behind fourth-placed Lazio.

Vlahovic headed an inviting Mattia De Sciglio cross over in an otherwise uneventful opening, but the striker made amends just before the half-hour mark.

A needless foul inside the area from Juve loanee Hans Nicolussi on Fabio Miretti offered the visitors the chance of the breakthrough, and Vlahovic powered in from the penalty spot with the help of Guillermo Ochoa's left post.

Vlahovic then wastefully dragged wide and made a similar connection with a poor right-footed volley, only for the latter miscued attempt to find Kostic, who poked in the second goal at the back post.

A delicate Nicolo Fagioli throughball teed up Vlahovic to add to his tally after the interval, the striker slotting a cool left-footed finish low past the onrushing Ochoa.

Angel Di Maria's fizzing strike cannoned against the crossbar and Moise Kean was denied by Ochoa's left post as Juve returned to form in emphatic fashion.

What does it mean? Juve back on track after Allegri warning

A 5-1 thrashing by runaways leaders Napoli and a 2-0 surprise defeat to Monza in Juve's last three league games, either side of a 3-3 draw with Atalanta, had caused Allegri some concern.

With Juve docked 15 points following an investigation into past transfer dealings, Allegri warned the Bianconeri they must first hit the 40-point mark to stave off an unlikely relegation.

Juve took a step towards doing that with an assured performance to move onto 26 points, though they have significant ground to make up for a place in Europe, trailing Italy's top six by 12.

Vlahovic's Salernitana hot streak continues

Vlahovic has now scored five goals in four league matches against Salernitana, with a brace for Fiorentina and three strikes for new club Juve, including his double in this game.

The first-half strike was Vlahovic's 14th goal from the spot from 15 attempts in Serie A – the best success rate (93 per cent) among players to take 15 or more penalties in the competition since his debut in 2018.

Concern for Miretti

Promising young midfielder Miretti won the penalty for Vlahovic's opener before leaving the field on a stretcher after 40 minutes with what appeared a concerning lower-leg injury.

The 19-year-old, who has enjoyed his breakthrough season for Juve this term, suffered the injury in a tackle with Boulaye Dia, and Allegri will be hoping the blow was not as bad as it first appeared.

What's next?

Juve are at home to Fiorentina on Sunday, while Salernitana visit Hellas Verona the following day.

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