Serie A Preview: Juve remain favourites, but Napoli, Inter poised to pounce if Sarri experiment backfires

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ESPN FC’s Serie A correspondents Gab Marcotti and Mina Rzouki discuss the teams who have the best shot at stopping Juventus this season.
Alejandro Moreno says Juventus need more from Cristiano Ronaldo in both the Champions League and Serie A this season.
Gab Marcotti and Mina Rzouki are at odds about how far Carlo Ancelotti and Napoli can push Juventus in Serie A in 2019-20.
Gab Marcotti delves into the faith Inter have placed in Antonio Conte to get players like Romelu Lukaku to shine this campaign.
Mina Rzouki breaks down the race for fourth place in Serie A, which looks set to be a season-long battle between Milan and Roma.

After a three-month hiatus, Serie A returns this Saturday, starting with Juventus at Parma, while every game in Italy’s top flight can be seen live in the United States on ESPN+ this season.

On the eve of the 2019-20 campaign, there is hope for all 20 clubs and questions abound: Will Juve win a ninth consecutive Scudetto? Who will qualify for the Champions League? Can Mario Balotelli keep his hometown club Brescia from being relegated?

Tom Williams is here to answer those questions and examine all of the calcio storylines to watch in 2019-20.

Serie A is still Juventus’ to lose

If Juventus fans will be closely scrutinising how their team adapts to life under new head coach Maurizio Sarri over the opening weeks of the new Serie A season, the same will be true for supporters of their expected title rivals, Napoli and Inter Milan.

Sarri, who might miss Saturday’s opening fixture against Parma after being diagnosed with pneumonia, was brought to Juventus to take the club to the next level. After eight successive Serie A titles, won by an average of more than nine points, mere domestic dominance will no longer suffice. The former Napoli coach is expected to inject panache into the somewhat perfunctory football that was Juve’s calling card under Massimiliano Allegri and end the club’s 23-year wait for a third Champions League crown.

It is no small order, but he has plenty of resources at his disposal. Juve saw off competition from various super clubs to sign centre-back starlet Matthijs de Ligt from Ajax and have bolstered their midfield with free transfers Aaron Ramsey from Arsenal and former PSG ace Adrien Rabiot. Cristiano R

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