Six key battles for Coppa Italia final: Juventus v Lazio
With Juventus chasing the second leg of a European treble in the Coppa Italia final against Lazio, and being 21/20 favourites to add this trophy to retaining Serie A with a win in 90 minutes, Coral experts started to wonder what the key battles will be?
Read on below to look at some of the stars on show in Lazio’s own Stadio Olimpico this midweek, and who they are up against.
For all his accolades, Juve playmaker Pirlo has won the Coppa Italia just once – a dozen years ago for AC Milan. His eye for a pass is still as crucial in supplying the attack as box-to-box runners used in Old Lady coach Massimiliano Allegri’s midfield diamond.
Azzurri centurion Pirlo, a tasty 10/3 to net anytime (most likely from a free-kick), is up against Lazio counterpart and late-bloomer Parolo, who has steadily improved his goal tally each season in recent years. In double figures, this campaign has been his best. Parolo is priced at 16/5 to score again here.
France’s golden boy Pogba has once again been linked with leaving Juventus, but before all that he faces a box-to-box battle with converted left-sided Lazio player Lulic. The Bosnian grabbed the winner in the semi-final second leg against Napoli, so is a superb 7/2 to be on target once more.
Pogba bagged a brace in Serie A against Lazio, though, when the Turin titans travelled to the Stadio Olimpico to play them back in November. Two goals or more again is an 11/1 shot, with safer anytime odds available for punters on Pogba at 13/5.
Twice this season the Lazio rearguard have tried to contain Serie A’s leading marksman Tevez, and twice they have failed. The Argentina striker, formerly of both Manchester United and City, clearly has the beating of Dutch defender De Vrij.
Outstanding odds of 7/4 say Tevez will strike again anytime and add to his seasonal tally of 29. He’s 9/2 to net the opener after four in five career appearances against the Eagles. Punters can enhance Tevez’s anytime odds by taking him in a 7/2 wincast with Juve being victorious in 90 minutes, and staking up to £20.
Attack-minded Switzerland right back Stephan Lichtsteiner is perceived in some quarters to be the Old Lady’s weak link. Brazilian attacker Anderson (no, not the infamous Man Utd one) is on the cusp of the international set-up, and has 11 goals this term. It’s 14/5 Samba starlet Felipe scores here.
Creative force Candreva is also in double figures for goals and assists, and grabbed the opener when Lazio last pinched a point off Juve. Up against experienced France defender Evra, another Old Trafford old boy, could be among the most compelling individual clashes on the pitch.
Capped 27 times by Italy, Eagles midfield maestro Candreva is an 8/1 shot to repeat his previous feat of scoring first from the right flank in this final.
We’ve saved the best head-to-head until last, though. In what could be his final game of a glittering career, Germany great Klose tangles with Chiellini, arguably the best defender in the world.
Veteran stager Klose, who turns 37 in June, has still managed a magnificent 15 goals in Lazio colours this term, following his international retirement when Die Mannschaft scooped the World Cup in Brazil last summer. All Azzurri left-footer Chiellini got for his trouble in South America was to be bitten by Luis Suarez.
Polish-born poacher Klose is well worth taking at 23/10 to net anytime, or in a 6/1 wincast with Lazio beating Juventus in 90 minutes (max stake £20). Centre back Chiellini is a set-piece threat himself, however, and has scored in this fixture before like the man he is marking. Punters can back the Italian as a 6/1 shot in the anytime market.
Coral betting tip: Taking one of the two wincasts on offer above (Tevez and Juve, or Klose and Lazio) look superb shouts, depending on which camp punters fall in for this Coppa Italia final.