Paul Pogba has given Juventus the lead, just before halftime, with this incredible goal. Juve can increase their lead over Lazio, who drew 2-2 with Palermo earlier today, with a win in Turin. Somewhere Alex Ferguson grimaces.
Update: He did it again.
Juventus coasted to a dominant 4-0 victory. In Pogba we trust.
It never takes long for a young footballer with some obvious ability—particularly one who stands 6 foot 2 and handles himself with composure well beyond his 19 years—to engage the hype machine that is the Italian media. Throw in a pair of first-team goals in 11 days and the superlatives will come faster than the presses can print them.
Of course, there is the occasional youngster for whom the enthusiasm is justified.
Five months shy of his 20th birthday, Paul Pogba has broken into one of the premiere midfields in European football and made an immediate impact. He has been a difference-maker. And this is all the more impressive given that when he starts, one of Andrea Pirlo, Claudio Marchisio and Arturo Vidal doesn’t.
Cue the plaudits.
“Uncontrollable,” wrote Diego Costa in La Repubblica following Pogba’s 92nd-minute winner for Juventus against Bologna on Wednesday. (The same writer also made a rather distasteful comparison to Hurricane Sandy, saying the player had been “a 20-minute hurricane against the Bologna defense. A ‘Sandy’ called Pogba.”) A column in La Gazzetta dello Sport went so far as to suggest Pogba could be “even better” than Patrick Vieira.
Two subs. Two goals. Though Edinson Cavani nearly scored a couple of highlight reel goals, it was Martin Caceres and Paul Pogba with the markers in a clash for first place – Pogba’s volley was a beauty. Juventus move three points clear of Napoli and have gone 47 consecutive league matches without a defeat. To put that in perspective, the last time Juventus lost was May 15th, 2011. They’ve opened this campaign (eight games) without their manager, Antonio Conte, and still haven’t lost. Andrea Pirlo hasn’t lost a league match since December 8th 2010. Via OptaPaolo, nine of the nineteen goals scored by Juventus have come from dead ball situations and no side has had more goals (5) from their subs. They’ll need 12 more results – AC Milan has the record for consecutive games unbeaten with 58 – but at this point can you doubt them? The bianconeri travel to Catania next week. Read the rest of this entry »