Fabio Quagliarella scored a magnificent hat-trick and created two more as he led Juventus to a 6-1 thrashing of Pescara at Stadio Adriatico.
The Italy striker netted two low drives and set up goals for Kwadwo Asamoah and Sebastian Giovinco, with Arturo Vidal also on target in a manic first half.
He then hit a ridiculous bicycle kick from a corner to complete his treble, the second overhead effort for Juve after Asamoah’s spectacular strike. It was also the Bianconeri’s first away hat-trick in three and a half years, with the legendary Alessandro Del Piero the last to bag three outside Turin at Atalanta in April 2008.
Skipper Emmanuel Cascione pulled one back for the hosts at 2-1 but they were never at the races, with Juve unfortunate not to hit double figures given the chances they created.
The result sees Juve maintain their top slot in Serie A, four points clear of Internazionale who play on Sunday, while Pescara stay 14th but could slide into the relegation zone dependent on results.
It was a total mismatch as Juve dominated from kick-off, almost taking the lead in the first minute as Giovinco’s run and shot tested keeper Mattia Perin.
They were ahead soon afterwards when Vidal scored a fifth goal of the season with a crisp low finish across the on-loan Genoa keeper after he was released by the excellent Giovinco.
Quagliarella had his first chance of the night as put wide after more good work from Giovinco, but he opened his account soon afterwards after controlling Mauricio Isla’s pass and firing a sweet low finish inside the left-hand post.
It was midway through the first half and Pescara had barely got past halfway. Their best spell came just after going two down though, as Colombian playmaker Juan Quintero hit the woodwork with a free-kick, with Cascione netting with a downward header just afterwards as Juve failed to clear the resultant corner.
At 2-1 the hosts had a sniff but it was an artificial scoreline and Juve extended their lead again when Asamoah – who was possibly offside – met Quagliarella’s backheel flick with a fantastic bicycle kick from eight yards.
The floodgates had opened and it was 4-1 soon afterwards as Quagliarella again provided the assist, this time for Giovinco, completing a lovely one-two with his fellow Italy international, the diminutive playmaker rifling a low finish past Perin.
It was not all plain-sailing for Juve, who struggled at set pieces, highlighted by Pescara’s goal but also when Claudio Marchisio was forced to clear off the line in acrobatic fashion after Cascione met a Quintero corner with another header.
But there was no stopping the Quag, who gobbled up his second of the night just before half-time after being given the run of Pescara’s half before smacking another low shot across Perin and in.
Pescara were a touch more attacking in the second half but, with Quagliarella bullying them on the break, it was inevitable that more should go Juve’s way.
And it did in some style as, after a poor first touch saw Quagliarella fail to finish, he made up for it in style by meeting the resultant corner with an outrageous bicycle kick into the top corner, made all the more impressive given he was being fouled at the time.
The home side still occasionally threatened from set plays, but despite going through the motions Juve were the more likely to add to their tally – Giovinco had three chances in quick succession, firing wide with one effort, hitting the side netting after rounding the keeper seconds afterwards, and shooting straight at Perin after a clever turn not long after that.
There were no more goals though and the win, Juve’s 10th of the Serie A campaign, ensures they stay top until next week at least.
- Sports & Recreation
- Sebastian Giovinco
- Fabio Quagliarella