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2017/2018 Italian Serie A
  • Mario Mandzukic (12')
  • Paulo Dybala (45'+1')
  • Gonzalo HiguaĆ­n (66')

Juventus control Cagliari to open Serie A campaign with victory

Getty Images - Juventus FC/Getty Images

Juventus launched their bid for a seventh successive Serie A title with a routine 3-0 home win over Cagliari.

Mario Mandzukic, Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuain all found the net in a comfortable victory, although Diego Farias missed a penalty for the visitors.

Juve needed just 12 minutes to take control, Mandzukic drilling home with a low shot after good approach play from Stephan Lichtsteiner.

Dybala curled wide from distance as Juve continued to push for a second goal, but the hosts were quickly pinned back as Cagliari rallied.

First Farias saw a sound effort well saved, then Paolo Farago blasted well over the bar.

And when Alex Sandro upended Duje Cop, Cagliari had a penalty and their finest chance for an equaliser.

Farias' spot-kick was saved comfortably however, and after that Juve quickly regained control.

Miralem Pjanic played in Dybala and the Argentina forward did the rest, firing into the top corner to double the hosts' lead.

Dybala hit the bar after good work from Cuadrado as Juve picked up the pace after the break. Sandro then atoned for conceding the penalty by teeing up Higuain for Juve's third, with the Argentina hitman slotting home with ease.

France midfielder Blaise Matuidi joined the fray late on for his Juve debut, fresh from his midweek switch from Paris St Germain.

The new recruit laid on one long-range effort for Dybala, but the hosts wound up happy to settle for their three goals.

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