Samuel Iling-Junior laid the foundations for Juventus‘ 2-0 victory away to Atalanta on Serie A Matchday 34 with the opening goal, and the British winger certainly deserved to find the back of the net after an impressive performance on the left flank.
The 19-year-old started for the first time in the league, taking the place of Serbian winger Filip Kostic, and the Juventus Next Gen player did not look out of place in the senior squad. His pace, direct running, and dribbling ability added some much-needed flair to the Bianconeri team.
Dusan Vlahovic came off the bench to seal the win as Federico Chiesa drove forward and laid him the ball before he smashed the ball into the net with a powerful left-footed shot.
This win takes Juventus to second place in the Serie A table with 66 points, putting them in a good position to secure a Champions League place, whereas Atalanta remain equal sixth with AS Roma on 58 points.
Iling-Junior dazzles for Juventus
Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri decided to make some changes to the squad that defeated Lecce 2-1 on Wednesday evening, which included not starting Filip Kostic at left wing-back.
Iling-Junior had impressed in the first half, but his defining moment came 11 minutes into the second half. He dispossessed an Atalanta player, dribbled down the left wing, and passed to Adrien Rabiot, who crossed the ball into the middle of the penalty area. The English starlet was able to get onto the loose ball after Arkadiusz Milik could not direct it on target, and he smashed it into the net.
The youngster took the place of one of the best crossers in Europe and did not look out of his depth. Although Kostic should remain the priority on the left flank, Iling-Junior adds a different attacking threat and should be utilised more often in the future.
Atalanta fire blanks despite laying siege on Juventus goal
Atalanta lost for the first time in four games and also failed to score a goal for the first time since that 2-0 defeat to Bologna on Serie A Matchday 29.
Prior to the Juventus game, La Dea had scored nine goals in four games, and the likes of Marten De Roon and Davide Zappacosta became unlikely sources for goals. Luck was not on the side of the Orobici this time, with the frame of the goal thwarting them a couple of times, and Wojciech Szczesny made some saves.
Atalanta played some of the entertaining football that they have been renowned for under Gian Piero Gasperini but they lacked the finishing touch against Juventus on this particular afternoon.