Second-half strikes from Fernando Llorente and Carlos Tevez saw Juventus climb to the top of the Serie A table with their 2-0 win over Livorno on Sunday afternoon at the Armando Picchi Stadium.
The result means the Old Lady continued their 71-year unbeaten record over the Amaranti to go two points clear at the top of the table, but with Roma still to play on Monday evening.
Juventus arrived in the Tuscan portside city with a defensive crisis on the hands, seeing suspensions and injuries rule out four of the backline players.
Still, their motivation to ensure a positive result was high, and they threatened in the six-yard area through Carlos Tevez. The Argentine tried to toe-poke the ball past Francesco Bardi but his effort was brilliantly closed down by Federico Ceccherini.
Livorno’s positional play when losing the ball and defending was commendable as they did well to press Juventus and push forward all at the same time.
In the 20th minute Simone Padoin supplied an impressive cross into the box for Fernando Llorente. The Spanish striker attempted an audacious back-heeled flick but it flew over the angular of the bar.
Five minutes later Innocent Emeghara tried his luck from just outside the box only to see it sail high over Gianluigi Buffon’s goal and into the South stand.
Bardi brilliantly denied Paul Pogba of the match-opener by tipping the Frenchman’s powerful snap-shot from range over the crossbar and out for a corner, on the stroke of half hour mark.
Livorno came out in the second-half with their guns blazing and it ignited a physical affair between the two teams.
Luca Siligardi did well to burst into the box and slalom his way through the defence and poke the ball to Leandro Greco. But instead of controlling the received ball and taking a shot, the midfielder went down to ground in search of a penalty, ultimately seeing him booked for simulation.
Juventus were then left fuming for not being handed a penalty kick in the 55th minute after Ceccherini was guilty for handling the ball inside the small box.
The Bianconeri got their revenge soon after. Pogba supplied the perfect cross into the box for Llorente who volleyed it into the back of the net with power, just minutes after the hour mark.
Just minutes later, the Tuscans were left appealing for a penalty for the same reasons Juventus were, but their hopes of a comeback were swiftly ruled out.
Tevez, who had been poor all afternoon, popped out of nowhere to slice home Juventus’ second goal of the afternoon with 15 minutes remaining.