Another season, another Juventus title procession. The 2018/19 Serie A campaign didn’t quite live up to the drama of the year before, when Maurizio Sarri’s Napoli pushed the Bianconeri all the way, but that’s not to say there wasn’t anything to hold the attention. Atalanta, for instance, stunning everyone by finishing third, qualifying for the Champions League.
This season, Napoli should be stronger after another year under Carlo Ancelotti. Inter Milan could be the ones to challenge Juve, though, with Antonio Conte now leading a revolution at the club. The 2019/20 Serei A season will carry with it plenty of storylines and plots. Here is what you should keep an eye on.
Eight years, eight Scudetti. This has been an era of dominance like no other for Juventus and it seems unlikely that the Bianconeri will allow their grip on the Italian top flight to slip this season. The Turin club have made a real mark in the transfer market in the past year, signing Cristiano Ronaldo last year and Matthijs de Ligt, Aaron Ramsey and Adrien Rabiot this summer.
Inter probably stand the best chance of challenging Juventus at the top of Serie A following the appointment of Conte. Napoli need to keep hold of Kalidou Koulibaly and add an attacking midfielder (James Rodriguez has been linked) to get close to the Bianconeri. Beyond these three, it’s difficult to envisage anyone else making a title tilt.
3u - Back Juventus To Win Serie A @ -220
Brescia won promotion back to the top flight by winning Serie B last season. They did so with a strong team and so they stand a good chance of making their place in Serie A stick. Verona, however, are deemed to be the weakest team in the league as we head into the 2019/20 season, with many making them favourites for the drop.
Genoa have had a tough time of it since losing Krzysztof Piatek to AC Milan last January and so many believe they will be sucked into the scrap near the foot of the table. Cagliari and Udinese could also face difficult seasons.
There was a sense that Ronaldo was just getting his feet under the table at Juventus last season. The Portuguese forward scored 21 times in 31 appearances, representing a decent haul, but still some way below the levels he is capable of. Piatek beat him to the Serie A Golden Boot last term, but it might not be wise to bet against Ronaldo catching light this season.
EXCITING TEAM/NARRATIVE - Can Antonio Conte beat the machine he helped build?
Inter couldn’t have found a better qualified man for the job. Conte is a three-time Scudetto winner, starting the run which has seen Juventus win eight league titles in succession. He built the Bianconeri machine that has come to dominate Italian football and now he is charged with beating them in his new job at San Siro.
Conte is already making demands, asking the club to deliver him Romelu Lukaku as the centre forward he wants to replace Mauro Icardi as Inter’s frontman. The former Chelsea manager demands a certain level of commitment from his players. He will change the culture at Inter, but will he deliver the success they so badly want?
PLAYER TO KEEP AN EYE ON
It would be unfair to describe Conte as purely a defensive coach. However, there is no doubt that his system requires a solid defensive footing to work. In Stefan de Vrij and Milan Skriniar he already inherited a strong centre back pairing at Inter, but the new boss at San Siro has added Diego Godin to his ranks too. The Uruguayan might be in his twilight years, but he remains one of the best defenders in the game. Could his signing be a catalyst for Inter?