MILAN: Juventus start a vital month for the season with the go to of outdated rivals Napoli as Serie A returns to motion on Thursday, with a Covid-19 resurgence looming giant over fixtures.
Dozens of gamers among the many high division’s 20 golf equipment are out of motion with the virus, with Juve captain Giorgio Chiellini a type of sidelined after testing constructive and 15 new instances amongst Verona and Udinese’s squads introduced on Tuesday.
And the fast unfold of the virus has led to stadium capacities being in the reduction of to 50 p.c because the Italian authorities tries to maintain the lid on one other wave of the pandemic.
Napoli coming to city marks the beginning of a run of difficult fixtures for Massimiliano Allegri’s facet, who’re fifth, a full 12 factors behind league leaders and reigning champions Inter Milan. In addition they should tackle Roma, AC Milan and Atalanta — who’re 4 factors forward of Juve within the ultimate Champions League spot — all earlier than mid-February.
Chiellini´s absence and harm to his membership and Italy defensive associate Leonardo Bonucci leaves Juve shorn of two of their most influential gamers, whereas in assault Paulo Dybala and Federico Chiesa might be on the bench after recovering from harm.
Napoli will arrive in Turin with a protracted absentee record, largely because of gamers on the Africa Cup of Nations and Covid instances, with coach Luciano Spalletti set to remain at dwelling with Covid after testing constructive on Tuesday.
Star striker Victor Osimhen, who has already missed a bit of fixtures with facial fractures, can be constructive alongside Hirving Lozano, Eljif Elmas, Kevin Malcuit and Mario Rui, who’s nonetheless suspended for Thursday’s match.