There are certain weekends in a domestic football schedule that have the potential to shape the course of a season. In Italy and Spain, this feels like exactly that.
Especially in Serie A, where six of the top seven sides will go up against one another, meaning the race for the title and the Champions League spots may look a whole lot different come Sunday evening.
In Spain there’s a similar feeling as on Sunday the top two sides will meet, with the potential there for a title battle to be reignited. Meanwhile, in the Premier League the defending champions and the champions elect will meet.
All kick offs are in Eastern time. Enjoy your weekend and enjoy the games!
With this trip to the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday and a showdown with Tottenham Hotspur in the Champions League to come next week, this stretch of fixtures is vital for Juventus.
The Bianconeri’s cancelled match with Atalanta last weekend means they now trail leaders Napoli by four points having played a game less and it means there’s absolutely no room for a slip up here. Up to now, Juve have been tremendous in trying to hunt down the Partenopei, winning their last nine games in succession in Serie A.
This is one of the biggest tests left in the campaign for the defending champions, as Lazio currently sit in third position having rediscovered some form with two recent wins in succession. Lazio also went to Juventus and won earlier in the campaign, meaning Simone Inzaghi’s side won’t be daunted by the challenge to come.
Indeed, Lazio are an irresistible attacking force, netting more goals than any side in the division. Containing Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Ciro Immobile will be key to Juventus taking any sort of positive result from this one.
Whatever Juventus muster earlier in the day, Napoli will have the chance to respond on home soil against Roma on Saturday evening.
While for many Juve’s suspended fixture with Atalanta will mean little, it may be important to Napoli. It gives Maurizio Sarri’s side the chance to set the pace at the top of the table and as they chase a first league title since 1990, you sense that’ll suit this group of players.