Juventus 1 - 0 Bologna

Match info: Serie A at Juventus Stadium

Date: 19/04/2014 KO: 17:30 Ref: Piero Giacomelli Att: 38,500

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Paul Pogba 64



FT (ht: 0-0)

  • Last Updated: April 18 2014, 12:32 BST

Juventus captain Gianluigi Buffon is full of admiration for the job club coach Antonio Conte has done so far.

Gianluigi Buffon: Praised his manager and Juve forwards
Gianluigi Buffon: Praised his manager and Juve forwards

Conte has led Juve to back-to-back Serie A titles and is on course to guide the Turin giants to clinch an historic third with his sight eight points clear of nearest rivals Roma going into Saturday's home match against Bologna.

"Even this year Conte has been extremely important in terms of motivating us," Buffon said. "When they say that after winning two league titles the third one is all the more difficult, it's true because in any group a sense of over-confidence can arise and lead to poor performance.

"However, Conte has made sure we were always prepared and don't take anything for granted."

Buffon has also praised the team's leading scorer Carlos Tevez, who is expected to return to the starting XI having rested in Monday's 2-0 triumph at Udinese.

"The will to win and the goal poaching characteristics of Tevez have given us a great helping hand, especially at the start of the season when we weren't at our best," Buffon said.

Juve, who are alive in the European competition and take on Benfica in the Europa League semi-finals later this month, have won all of their home league games so far.

The Bianconeri have lost just twice this season and have the best striking force in the competition with 71 goals scored.

Rivals Bologna travel to the Juventus Stadium having collected just one win in their last 10 games.

Last weekend's 1-1 draw against Parma followed their 2-2 result at Inter Milan and kept the Rossoblu in 17th place, one spot and three points clear of the relegation zone.

"We have to and we want to do well," Bologna coach Davide Ballardini said. "We know our battle to defend our Serie A status will go down to the wire.

"There are five games remaining and everything to play for."

The hosts must overcome the absence of defenders Leonardo Bonucci and Stephan Lichtsteiner, both suspended.

Bologna will be without injured midfielder Rene Khrin.