Football

Juventus force themselves back into Serie A title race

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After a summer exodus which saw star performers Andrea Pirlo, Carlos Tevez and Arturo Vidal depart the club, Juventus struggled to make an impact we have become accustomed to them making in Italy at the start of the season.

An unexpected defeat to Udinese, drawing with newly promoted Frosinone and quite simply a lack of form throughout the squad plagued Juve as the likes of Inter Milan, Napoli, Fiorentina and Roma seized the opportunity to fight for the Serie A summit.

However, now it seems Juve have got their act together as they begin to launch an assault on the Serie A. New signings look to be finally settling in and the consensus surrounding the club altogether is a lot more positive.

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New signings finally proving their worth

It was a busy summer window for the 'Old Lady' as they are known, they looked to combat their summer exodus by making some marquee signings. Paulo Dybala was brought in from Palermo, Mario Mandzukic from Atletico Madrid, Sami Khedira came on a free from Real Madrid and Juan Cuadrado signed on loan from Chelsea after a disappointing stint in the Premier League.

For a while, it seemed as if these new recruits would struggle to make an effective impact this season but that has now been turned on its head. Khedira overcame his injury concerns at the start of the season and is now performing admirably in the heart of the midfield while Dybala and Mandzukic have forged a very effective striking duo in recent weeks.

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The old stereotypical little and large partnership has been working wonders for the two new strikers, with both men getting in amongst the goals in recent weeks. Last season's revelation Alvaro Morata has been regularly confined to the bench because of the duo's form - a testament to the positive impact they are now having.

Cuadrado too seems back at home in Italy, where he previously thrived at Fiorentina and scored against his old club in Sunday's 3-1 victory. The new signings seem to have settled in Turin and it is no coincidence the club has made huge strides forward in recent months after their sub-standard start.

Old Guard and Pogba look near there best

The likes of Gianluigi Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini, Andrea Barzagli, Leonardo Bonucci and Claudio Marchisio have been mainstays in this Juve team for some time and helped rebuild the club after the controversial Calciopoli scandal.

Injury concerns and a severe dip in form at the start of the season was plaguing this 'Old Guard', and the solid platform that had come to symbolise this Juve side looked in danger of fading away. However, they now look back to their effective best and should be a serious cause for concern for their title rivals as these are players who know how to get the job done and secure domestic titles.

Paul Pogba has been a rather enigmatic figure in football over the last couple of years as he has begun to cement himself as one of the finest midfielders within the modern game.

It seemed as if the added pressure of being handed the number ten shirt at the start of the season was having an adverse effect on the mercurial Frenchmen's form, but it now looks he is also creeping back towards his finest form.

A solid display in Sunday's victory over Fiorentina was not vintage Pogba, but it was a performance which showed that he is slowly regaining the confidence that made him one of the most feared players on the planet.

The omens look good for Juve, their crucial players are returning to the heights which saw them nearly achieve European glory last year and the new signings are making their mark and adding different dimensions to this already talented side.

The title race is wide open in Italy and every week the results seem as unpredictable as ever, but if there is one team who knows how to win this division it is the black and white side from Turin, they are most definitely back in the mix.

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Topics:
Paul Pogba
Serie A
Football
UEFA Champions League

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