Vlahovic and Zakaria had dream debuts for Juventus, scoring in a 2-0 win over Hellas Verona on Sunday to lift the Turin club to fourth place in Serie A.
Vlahovic, Serbian international who joined Juve from Fiorentina on Jan. 28 in a move worth up to 80 million euros ($92 million), scored the game’s first goal after 13 minutes with a brilliantly weighted lob.
Signing on the deadline day With a stunning drive after the break, Zakaria made it 2-0.
It was the 22-year-18th old’s goal of the season, tying him for the league’s leading scorer with Ciro Immobile of Lazio, and he came close to adding a second before halftime in an outstanding Bianconeri debut.
After the break, deadline day arrival Zakaria surged forward from midfield to strike a shot into the bottom corner, making things even better for Massimiliano Allegri’s side.
“The most essential thing is to score goals,” Vlahovic told DAZN, “but I also want to improve in every manner and help the club.”
“Allegri didn’t ask me to do anything specific; he simply advised me to remain calm and relaxed, and that everything would turn out alright.”
With 45 points, Juventus moved two points ahead of Atalanta into fourth place, eight points behind leaders Inter Milan, while Verona slipped to ninth place with 33 points.
Allegri’s team has gone undefeated in ten league games, and Vlahovic’s presence has fuelled speculation about whether they can reclaim the title this season.
“Juve is continuously striving for the best results. When a competition begins, Juventus’ goal is to win it “Vlahovic explained.
“That is why I am here: to assist and contribute. We’ll take it game by game and see where we are at the conclusion of the season.”
In the Allianz Stadium, the excitement for Vlahovic’s debut was overwhelming. The home audience didn’t have to wait long to get a taste of what the Serbian has to offer, as a jumping Lorenzo Montipo palmed his ferocious shot away early on.
Vlahovic showed his class five minutes later when he chased down a Paulo Dybala pass and guided a brilliant lob over the outrushing Montipo and into the bottom corner.
Throughout the first half, the Serbian’s physicality caused difficulties for the Verona defense, and he came close to adding a second when he guided a shot wide from an Alvaro Morata cross.
After 61 minutes, Morata was the architect of Juve’s second goal, driving through the middle of the pitch and picking out Zakaria’s run, which the Switzerland international took a touch before driving home.
Montipo’s heroics, which included blocking a Dybala effort with his legs and making diving saves from Adrien Rabiot and Weston McKennie, kept the score close.Juventus has closed the gap on Inter Milan to eight points.
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