First team to win six straight Serie A ti­tles

New Straits Times - - Sport -

JU­VEN­TUS be­came the first team to win Serie A six times in a row when they beat Cro­tone 3-0 yes­ter­day to clinch the ti­tle with one game to spare.

Mario Mandzu­kic, Paulo Dy­bala, with a stun­ning free kick, and Alex San­dro shared the goals as the Turin side also won a league and cup dou­ble for the third time in a row and stayed on course for a tre­ble.

Ata­lanta clinched fifth place and a spot in the Europa League group stage by win­ning 1-0 at Em­poli and AC Mi­lan made sure of sixth place, and a place in the Europa League qual­i­fiers, by beat­ing Bologna 3-0.

Juve’s win over their rel­e­ga­tion-threat­ened op­po­nents, took them on to 88 points from 37 games, four clear of AS Roma who won 5-3 at Chievo on Satur­day. Napoli are a fur­ther point be­hind in third, the Cham­pi­ons League play­off spot.

Ju­ven­tus, who are Italy’s most suc­cess­ful side in do­mes­tic terms with 33 league ti­tles, will face Real Madrid in the Cham­pi­ons League fi­nal on June 3 when they will at­tempt to com­plete the tre­ble.

“The sixth con­sec­u­tive ti­tle is some­thing ex­tremely sig­nif­i­cant,” said Juve’s 39-year-old goal­keeper Gian­luigi Buf­fon, who has won eight Serie A ti­tles at the club.” We have writ­ten in­deli­ble pages in the his­tory of foot­ball.”

Cro­tone had won five and drawn two of their last seven games as they made a late bid to es­cape the drop but were fac­ing a Ju­ven­tus side who have dropped only two points at home all sea­son.

The vis­i­tors were able to re­sist for only 12 min­utes un­til Mandzu­kic got in front of his marker to turn in Juan Cuadrado’s low cross at the far post.

Dy­bala curled in a stun­ning 25me­tre free kick six min­utes be­fore half­time and Alex San­dro com­pleted the scor­ing in the 83rd minute with a header which hit the un­der­side of the cross­bar, bounced down and crossed the goal line by cen­time­tres.

Cro­tone are 18th in the 20-team ta­ble but re­mained only one point be­hind Em­poli, the team im­me­di­ately above the drop zone.

Ale­jan­dro Gomez gave Ata­lanta an early lead at Em­poli who were un­able to find an equaliser and were foiled by an amaz­ing dou­ble clear­ance off the line by An­drea Masiello just be­fore the hour.

Mi­lan had to wait un­til the last half hour for their goals against Bologna.

Ger­ard Deulofeu volleyed in from Ma­tias Fer­nan­dez’s pass, Keisuke Honda curled in a free kick and Gian­luca La­padula com­pleted the scor­ing in stop­page time.

Genoa, who have had a dread­ful sec­ond half of the sea­son, made sure of sur­vival when they beat Torino 2-1 with goals from Luca Rigoni and Gio­vanni Sime­one, the son of Atletico Madrid coach Diego. Reuters


Ju­ven­tus play­ers cel­e­brate af­ter win­ning the Serie A match against Cro­tone and the ‘Scud­etto’ at the Ju­ven­tus Sta­dium in Turin yes­ter­day.

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