Tue, Nov 11, 2014 - Page 19 News List

Juve in seventh heaven with 7-0 Parma rout, as rampant Roma reduce arrears

AFP, MILAN, Italy

AS Roma’s Adem Ljajic shoots and scores against Turin in their Serie A match at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome on Sunday.

Photo: Reuters

Coach Massimiliano Allegri earned plaudits as a rejigged Juventus claimed their biggest Serie A win in 31 years with a 7-0 rout of Parma which left visiting coach Roberto Donadoni feeling “impotent and embarrassed” on Sunday.

Fernando Llorente, Carlos Tevez and Alvaro Morata scored a brace apiece, with Stephan Lichsteiner firing a superb goal as the defending champions crushed Donadoni’s men to record their most resounding win since a 7-0 success over Ascoli in December 1983. The victory initially stretched Juve’s lead over title challengers AS Roma to six points, although the gap was halved when the Giallorossi trounced Torino 3-0 at the Stadio Olimpico.

Injuries to Patrice Evra, Kwadwo Asamoah and Angelo Ogbonna in recent weeks forced Allegri to ditch his tried and trusted 3-5-2 formation for last week’s UEFA Champions League clash with Olympiakos.

After the Bianconeri ran out 3-2 winners against the Greek side, Allegri on Sunday adopted a 4-3-1-2 formation that, coupled with Parma’s total lack of threat, underlined Juve’s potency even when forced to play out of their comfort zone.

Yet the Juve boss played down suggestions that he may rethink his tactics for the rest of the season: “That system won three consecutive Scudetti and we used it well at the start of the season as well. It’s all down to how you interpret systems, not just the lineup.”

Parma beat Inter 2-0 last week to claim only their second win of the season, but by the end of Sunday they were back in bottom as Donadoni contemplated the gulf between the top and bottom sides in Serie A.

“The game is easy to explain: We faced a great Juve side and we simply didn’t show up,” Donadoni told Radio Rai. “All you’re left with is a feeling of impotence and embarrassment after a game like that.”

Dutch midfielder Kevin Strootman made his return from injury for Roma following an eight-month layoff due to a cruciate ligament injury, but by the time he came on with seven minutes remaining, the damage had been done.

Roma got an eighth-minute lead from Vasilis Torosidis and doubled it when Seydou Keita powered into the area to slam a drive past Jean-Francois Gillet just before the half hour for his maiden Roma goal.

When Adem Ljajic latched on to Miralem Pjanic’s perfect through-ball just before the hour, he completed the victory with a sumptuous drive from outside the area that had Gillet clutching at thin air.

Roma captain Francesco Totti reacted badly when he was replaced by Mattia Destro on 70 minutes, but coach Rudi Garcia said: “I don’t know why he took it like that, but he’s my best player and I don’t want him to get injured.”

Earlier, SSC Napoli moved up to third with a stirring performance at ACF Fiorentina where Gonzalo Higuain’s 61st-minute strike from inside the area secured the points for Rafael Benitez’s men.

The Viola have now taken only four points from their last five games and dropped to 11th spot.

In the day’s other games, SS Lazio sat fifth in the tables after a 2-1 slip-up away to promoted Empoli, while 10-man Inter escaped with a 2-2 draw at home to Hellas Verona, AC Chievo Verona overcame AC Cesena 2-1 and US Citta di Palermo drew Udinese 1-1.

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