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Sports

Juventus claim Italian title for fourth year in succession

media Juventus players celebrate their Serie title with coach Massimo Allegri after a 1-0 win at Sampdoria Reuters/Giorgio Perottino

Juventus won the Italian title for the 31st time in their history on Saturday night thanks to their win at Sampdoria.

Juventus, as has been expected for the past couple of months, have claimed the Italian title.

There had been a few surprises latterly with the 1-0 defeat at Parma and the derby loss against Torino. 

But when the job needed to be completed, the side was effective. Arturo Vidal got the goal after 32 minutes to wrap up the championship with four games to spare.

It's the fourth consecutive crown for the Turin giants and vindicates the owners' choice to install the former AC Milan boss Massimo Allegri as coach at the start of the season.

The 47-year-old has struggled to establish his own seal on the squad after taking over from Antonio Conte who led the team out of Serie B and to three Serie A titles.

"After Conte it was difficult to do something good because Conte was a hero to the Juve fans," said Alessandra Bocci, a football writer at the Gazzetta dello Sport.

"When Conte arrived in Turin, Juventus was destroyed by match fixing scandals and were relegated because of it. They did everything with Conte and so it has been difficult to accept another coach, especially a coach who was at AC Milan and a rival when Juve were trying to win a title a few years back."

Allegri has been helped in his quest to impress the fans by the goals of the Argentine Carlos Tevez.

He's scored 28 times in 43 appearances this season.

The 31-year-old will be one of the keys when Juve play the first leg of their Uefa Champions League semi-final against Real Madrid.

The wily warrior that is Andrea Pirlo will also be a factor in that game against the European champions. His midfield nous has been invaluable to Juve when they've fought for midfield control of matches.

Ironically it was the arrival of Allegri at AC Milan in 2011 that spelt the end of Pirlo's time at the San Siro after 10 seasons.

Allegri didn't consider the 31-year-old as crucial in the reconstruction of the Milan squad. Pitching up at Juventus under Conte revitalised Pirlo and while Milan have withered, Pirlo has blossomed.

The vagaries of football are epitomised in the reunion of Allegri and Pirlo at Juventus.

With Serie A now sorted, Allegri can continue his hunt for a treble. Juve are also in the final of the Coppa Italia - a trophy they haven't won since 1995.

They're in the latter stages of the Uefa Champions League for the first time since 2003. For a man living in someone else's shadow, Allegri is making a pretty good fist of establishing his own legend.

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