Udinese 1-4 Juventus: Referee Decision Mars Match

Juventus may have scored four goals at the Stadio Friuli, but the true talking point of this match was Paolo Valeri's decision to send off Udinese goalkeeper Zeljko Brkić after barely ten minutes. Arturo Vidal converted the penalty, Mirko Vucinić scored, and Sebastian Giovinco had a brace. Andrea Lazzari pulled one back for Udinese, but they'll always ask the question, "What if?"

The defining moment occurred in the 12th minute, when Giovinco slipped between two Udinese defenders to fetch a long pass from Andrea Pirlo. At that point, Danilo shoved him into Brkić, who was coming out to deal with the ball. Valeri blew his whistle, pointed to the spot, and held out a red card to the very confused goalkeeper. Yes, it was certainly a penalty -- but that's not a red card, and Udinese have every right to feel hard done by.

After Vidal converted his penalty, the Old Lady spent much of the rest of the first half seemingly toying with the home side, keeping possession but not doing much of anything with it. Just before the break, however, Vucinić managed to double Juve's chances, slipping it in from the edge of the box.

Seba scored twice in the second half. The first goal would have been easily dealt with by a first-choice keeper, but the little guy did well for his second, displaying a bit of trickery to evade Maurizio Domizzi before driving it into the back of the net. The final goal was a consolation for Udinese, when Lazzari scored his first for his new club.

So the defending champions managed four goals, but how much does that really tell us about their skill and readiness for the upcoming season? I'm betting Roberto Di Matteo, in the stands to check out his Chelsea's Champions League competition, still has very little sense of what Juventus can actually do.

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