Juventus vs. AS Roma: Preview and TV schedule

Maurizio Lagana

On Sunday is unquestionably the biggest game of the Serie A season so far, as league leaders Juventus host unbeaten Roma.

The new year of Serie A football could hardly begin in a more exciting fashion than seeing the league leaders Juventus take on second-placed AS Roma. But, that's exactly what the fixture gods have given us, with the two teams at the top of the league afforded no easy games to break them back into the swing of Serie A football after the Christmas festivities. They're both thrown in at the deep end, in what is unquestionably the biggest game of the season so far.

There's no doubt that Juventus head in as favourites, having won nine Serie A games on the trot and opened up a five-point advantage at the top of the table. You have to go back almost exactly a year for the last time the bianconeri were beaten in the league in front of their own fans, meaning Roma have one hell of a job on their hands if they're to pick up a win.

However, Rudi Garcia's side are the only unbeaten team in the league, and smashed bottom side Catania 4-0 before the winter break. It's worth nothing that they've drawn their last three games on the road, though evergreen captain Francesco Totti should return to the centre of his side's attacking trident after an injury layoff. He's still been crucial to the giallorossi this season, and his movement and creativity could prove to be decisive.

The good news is that neither side has any injury concerns of note. Doubtful centre-back Andrea Barzagli is Juventus' only concern, though Martín Cáceres is waiting in the wings in the event of Barzagli not recovering. Roma's only definite absentee is full-back Federico Balzaretti, though with young Brazilian Dodô having firmly established himself as Garcia's first-choice, that won't be too much of a concern.

Juventus injuries and suspensions

Out: None. In doubt: Andrea Barzagli.

AS Roma injuries and suspensions

Out: Federico Balzaretti (injured). In doubt: None.

Projected lineups

Juventus: Gianluigi Buffon; Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci, Andrea Barzagli; Kwadwo Asamoah, Paul Pogba, Andrea Pirlo, Arturo Vidal, Stephan Lichtsteiner; Fernando Llorente, Carlos Tévez.

AS Roma: Morgan De Sanctis; Dodô, Leandro Castán, Mehdi Benatia, Maicon; Kevin Strootman, Daniele De Rossi, Miralem Pjanić; Mattia Destro, Francesco Totti, Gervinho.

Match Date/Time: Sunday, 8:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET

Venue: Juventus Stadium, Turin, Italy

TV: beIN Sport USA (U.S. - English), RAI Internazionale (U.S. and Canada - Italian), BT Sport 1 (U.K.), Sky Calcio 1, Premium Calcio (Italy).

Online: beIN Sport Play (U.S. and Canada), BT Sport 1 (U.K.)

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