Exaggerated celebrations as Juve defeat Bologna

Posted by Mina Rzouki

Bologna may not be considered a giant, but they certainly know how to defeat one considering their exploits against the likes of Napoli and Inter this year. Under Stefano Pioli, the side continue to stun and had accrued three consecutive wins with the hope they would manage another against the Italian champions. However, two excellent second-half goals from the Old Lady left Pioli ruing his side's demise and their inability to react appropriately.

- Juventus go 12 points clear
- Highlights: Bologna 0-2 Juventus

Racing towards their second consecutive Serie A title, Juventus were wasteful but at least managed to convert twice to collect all three points and maintain their advantage at the top of the table. Facing a Bologna side that was unwilling to roll over and budget for a defeat, Pioli deployed a rather attacking side with the aim of running at Juve to test their strength.

With Alberto Gilardino played up top in a 4-2-3-1 formation, Bologna were reliant on Saphir Sliti Taider to intercept and win back possession to then allow Diamanti the opportunity to exploit his creativity. However, the side's inability to avoid individual errors gifted Juventus several opportunities to snatch possession and construct attacking passages of play.

Giovinco, in particular, exuded brilliance with his trickery and fine ability to escape his markers. Boasting excellent feet, he was fundamental when it came to inspiring the attack, doing all that he could to create opportunities only to then squander his chance in front of goal. Brilliant until he strikes, Giovinco rarely used his power to release an unstoppable shot. Once again on Saturday, he was guilty of squandering several chances in front of goal despite proving to be a lovely player to watch.

However, defensively this was an impressive showing from the Bianconeri even if they were guilty of allowing the opponents one too many freekicks from around the area. However, all of Bologna's attacking threats were safely neutralised and when one did manage to slip away then the Old Lady was safe in the knowledge Gianluigi Buffon can still perform with his feet to rescue his side.

The main issue of the match wasn't that Juventus had excelled again but rather Antonio Conte's celebrations. Pioli, a former Bianconero himself, was appalled at the manner in which the Old Lady's Coach rejoiced in such brazen fashion in front of the cameras and in full view of the away fans.

Speaking to Angelo Alessio, Pioli felt his side and his fans were disrespected by such 'over-exaggerated' reactions on the sidelines. For a country riddled with problems that range from dodgy politics, a collapsing economy and an inability to deal with racism, one would think a little rejoicing on the sidelines would be allowed. After all, Conte needed to release some tension.

Having given his testimony to the courts with regards to his time at Bari, the win at Bologna was his opportunity to demonstrate that whatever has been written about him, regardless of the criticism and the desire for his failure, he and his beloved squad will continue to succeed.

However, for Conte, comments with regards to his celebrations in addition to the manner in which the city of Bologna welcomed Juventus has irked him to an extent that the tactician may well seek a move abroad. "We are not at war, here. This is sport. This is sport," reiterated the Bianconeri mister angrily. "I was truly stunned that a civilised city like Bologna greeted the team bus with sticks, rocks, spit, even people who shouted vile abuse while holding four-year-old children in their arms."

Whilst Conte has always maintained that it is his dream to stay with the club that he captained as a player, the desire to have an experience abroad is now more appealing than ever considering the treatment he and his side have received from various cities within Italy and the exaggerated reactions of opponents.

Unfortunately for the tactician, this was to be expected. In one of his very first comments to the press as the new coach of Juventus, Conte reiterated the hope that the Bianconeri would once again be a hated team as that would mean success. His wish has come true even if it now means he has also become the most hated man in calcio.

ESPN Conversations