This is no exaggeration as many of you might think. If you look into previous season, with no world class forward, Juventus made their unbeaten run record. It was one of the most sensational midfield performance I ever see from Juventus with only 3 recognized midfielders called MVP (Marchisio-Vidal-Pirlo). The only thing missed from their astonishing midfield was decent subs/squad depth. But they already improvised during transfer window with some names arrived: Kojo (Kwadwo Asamoah), Mauricio Isla, Paul Pogba, and Sebastian Giovinco.
I've been following Italy national team and Serie A since WC 1994 and Juventus is my favoured team in Italy so I know them quite much (dont worry, Chelsea is still my number 1).
Barcelona & Madrid probably stand on the top of the list when we're talking about clubs with best midfielders thanks to their big name players. I take Barcelona as comparison: they now have Xavi-Iniesta-Busquets-Fabregas-Mascherano-Song-Thiago (adding that Messi & other forwards often play from deep and help their midfield) and they do wonderful job last season (+Keita -Song). But in my perspective, what they can only do is passing carousel at its finest. It's great (and boring as well) to see tiki-taka whatsoever and off course it's dangerous. But that's only it: have you ever seen them dangerous when they passes weren't dynamic (i.e. when the pitch is bad or anything that made their passes ineffectual and they started to dive, dive, dive)? Apart from the fact that our traditional 'parking bus' always success against them, have they ever played against team with better possession and won the match in defensive approach? Never for sure. And that's what Juventus are. They are always impressive even when the pitch is bad, the passes not so dynamic, and also when they unable to dominating the game.
According to WhoScored, in their first 3 matches, the 5 best players of them are their midfielders. All of them are rated above 8. Here's I write a few about them:
- Andrea Pirlo is the main man, he spreads the ball everywhere short or long with high accuracy. He also does his bit in defensive duty by marking his opponents and tackle them. Quite poor in the air, slow in pace, but still able to dribble past 1 or 2 opponents. Very good at set pieces (despite scoring no goal from Freekick for Juventus last season) and deliver great, great, balls from his own half. One of the best deep lying playmaker in the world.
- Arturo Vidal, the forgotten Chilean star who scored 7 goals for Juventus last season, 10 goals 15 assists previously for Leverkusen. He's naturally DMF who can play as pivot (it's very popular recently), strong tackler, aerials battler, proper box-to-box and also has a good sense in long pass and long shot. What else to say? I was hoping he joined Chelsea last season from Leverkusen when he stated he wanted to leave them. He was available for €10 m as well. So I was gutted when he joined Juventus instead.
- Claudio Marchisio. I can't really see anything really special from this guy but I like him a lot. He's not the player with the best passing, best dribbling, or anything. But he has it all balanced. He fill the role between Pirlo and Vidal last season and scored 9 goals with his intelligent timing in penalty box. He's not on the same level with Lampard or Gerrard but he plays effectively with everyone, unlike those aforementioned names.
- Emmanuele Giaccherini is no world class player but one of consistent performers for Juventus if he had the chance to play. He's small but very quick. Scored beautiful goal against Genoa in his first appearance this season. Despite only play once this season, he made 5 key passes on that game. Albeit he played very poor for Italy in Euro 2012, I can say he's improving a lot and does his job very well.
- Kwadwo Asamoah is one of their best signings this season. At a glance he looks like a tenacious powerful midfielder like Essien during his prime, and yes he is. He's strong physically but also offering good pace & good technique. He's a decent defensive winger who has good cross and powerful long shot. If you watched his debut goal vs Napoli on Supercoppa, you surely watched him scoring beautiful goal with his left foot, outside penalty box, with one touch.
- Sebastian Giovinco. A Juventus fanboy who drives the team on his own dribble and neat passes. He's very small but he's tricky player. I assume that he has the same agility & dribbling style like Arjen Robben, but he's not as selfish as Robben and much better in terms of playmaking and set pieces. To add a stat, he scored 15 goals and 11 assists for Parma last season. A massive coup for Juventus.
I think this season they're all clicked well and really dangerous. At first I was disappointed not to see any worldclass strikers joined Juventus but then it's blessing in disguise for me as Chelsea fan. There are still few names await to be played and I haven't watched them yet this season. Paul Pogba & Mauricio Isla were the names that I'm afraid will give another worrying factor to our Chelsea side. I'm not forgetting De Ceglie and Lichsteiner as their additional midfield in 3-5-2 since to me they're more wingbacks, not midfielders.
I hope Robbie will be looking to attack from first mins. If we'd choose to sit back and waiting for the counter, I'm afraid that wouldn't success. I give you my preferred formations: