Juventus were held to a point against a resolute Sassuolo side at the Allianz Stadium on Sunday afternoon, opening the door for Inter at the top of Serie A.


The visitors started brightly, but it was I Bianconeri who fashioned the best chance of the opening stages, with Emre Can failing to convert from point-blank range.


Can's glorious opportunity didn't deter Sassuolo however, who looked cool in possession and the more threatening side overall, with Jeremie Boga going close.

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Against the run of play, Juve took the lead as Leonardo Bonucci decided to take matters into his own hands. Rodrigo Bentancur laid the ball off to the onrushing Juve skipper before the centre-half unleashed a speculative drive from distance which, with the help of a deflection, found its way into the bottom corner.


The lead didn't last long, though, as the away side got their just reward for their impressive start - Boga combining with Manuel Locatelli on the edge of the Juve box before expertly dinking the ball over a helpless Gianluigi Buffon.


The equaliser failed to spark life into a sluggish Juventus side as the sides went into the break at one apiece. 


Maurizio Sarri's men then found themselves 2-1 down almost immediately after the restart. Matthijs de Ligt made a mess of what should've been a simple clearance, playing the ball right into the path of Francesco Caputo whose tame shot was spilt into the back of the net by Buffon. That goal finally seemed to reinvigorate the hosts, with Cristiano Ronaldo and Higuain forcing Stefano Turati into two brilliant saves.

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Juve's improvement was soon rewarded, with substitute Paulo Dybala winning a penalty for the Sarri's side after Sassuolo were dispossessed deep in their own half. Ronaldo, of course, made no mistake from 12 yards.


The home side dominated the remainder of the game, but the visitors stood firm and held Serie A's table-toppers to just a point.


JUVENTUS


Key Talking Point


After numerous marginal victories this season, a slip-up was inevitable for Juventus. 


The hosts were woeful in the first half with very few of the starting XI actually looking up for the battle - falling 2-1 behind almost immediately after the restart in what was an absolute calamity of a goal to concede. 

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Substitutes Dybala and Blaise Matuidi certainly helped Juve improve in the second half - the former being instrumental in the home side getting the equaliser with just over 20 minutes to play. 


On the whole, however, it was a dismal display and now, they've let the door wide open for Inter ahead of their game with SPAL later today.


Player Ratings


Starting XI: Buffon (4); Cuadrado (7), Bonucci (7), de Ligt (3), Sandro (6); Can (4), Pjanic (7), Bentancur (6); Bernadeschi (4); Higuain (6), Ronaldo (5).


Subs: Dybala (8*), Matuidi (6), Ramsey (6)


Star Man


After a dire opening 45 minutes, second-half substitute Paulo Dybala was at the heart of everything that went right for I Bianconeri while he was on the pitch.


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Replacing the poor Federico Bernardeschi in the number ten role, the Argentine found himself is some fantastic positions - popping up all over the place in the final third. 


Juve's intensity out of possession increased significantly as a result of Dybala, with the 26-year-old winning a penalty for the hosts after hassling I Neroverdi from a short goal kick. 


His creative spark wasn't quite enough to gift his side all three points, but a game-changing performance nonetheless.


SASSUOLO


Player Ratings


Starting XI: Turati (8); Toljan (6), Marlon (7), Romagna (7), Kyriakopoulos (6); Magnanelli (6), Locatelli (7), Traore (6); Djuricic (5), Caputo (7), Boga (8).


Subs: Duncan (6), Muldur (6), Peluso (N/A)


Looking Ahead


Juventus take on the high-flying Lazio on the road next Saturday before travelling to Leverkusen for their final Champions League group stage game.


As for the visitors, the Coppa Italia is next on their agenda as they host second-tier Perugia on Wednesday afternoon. They then host Cagliari in Serie A next Sunday.