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Italian Serie A

Serie A weekend preview

Striker Mirko Vucinic believes Juventus' work ethic is at the heart of their push for back-to-back Serie A titles.

Last Updated: 11/01/13 at 08:38 Post Comment

Mirko Vucinic: Praised Juventus' work ethic

Mirko Vucinic: Praised Juventus' work ethic

Antonio Conte's men are five points clear at the top despite suffering a surprise 2-1 defeat at home to Sampdoria in their first game back from the winter break last weekend.

Juve's response was to overcome a tricky Coppa Italia quarter-final against AC Milan 2-1 in midweek. Vucinic scored the extra-time winner but rather than claim the glory he lavished praise on his team-mates as they now prepare for a trip to Parma, who have won their past three.

"It's our spirit that makes this team unique," Vucinic told reporters.

"Everyone here gives their all from the first minute until the last and helps out their team-mates. There aren't any prima donnas at Juventus. Milan are never easy opponents and it wasn't simple to win. We managed to do so and we're still on track in every competition."

Milan will attempt to bounce back from exiting the cup when they travel to Sampdoria in Sunday's late game.

Samp's win in Turin last weekend moved them four points clear of the relegation zone, but they will start as underdogs having lost their past two league home games and failing to score.

A busy week for Inter Milan concludes with the visit of lowly Pescara to San Siro on Saturday.

The Nerazzurri paved the way for Wesley Sneijder's departure after agreeing a reported 10million euros offer from Galatasaray on Wednesday night.

Sneijder's season has been ruined by a contract dispute and has not played since September. in his absence Inter have failed to find any consistency and are nine points off the pace.

In Saturday's only other game, Bologna can extend the two-point gap between them and the bottom three when they host Chievo.

A three-game winning run has elevated Lazio up to second and they host Atalanta on Sunday.

After a good start Atalanta have slid to 12th on the back of one win in seven games.

"We need to improve our away record because we've played well but brought nothing home," boss Stefano Colantuono said.

"Away points are just as important as ones we pick up at home."

Fiorentina's bid for Champions League football continues away to Udinese with new signing Giuseppe Rossi confident the Viola can return to Europe's premier competition.

"This is a new project and I'm happy to play a part in it," he said.

"They've given me an opportunity to play top-level football again and we are fighting for big prizes like Champions League qualification. The most important thing is to stay grounded, we have a good team and are in fourth place, so we can definitely compete for a European place."

At the other end of the table, Cagliari host Genoa in a relegation battle. Cagliari can jump out of the drop zone and above their rivals with victory.

Bottom-placed Siena, who have lost their past five, travel to Torino while Palermo will not be expected to halt their alarming slide into the bottom three away to third-placed Napoli.

Roma travel to Catania in the final match of the round.

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