The 2019-20 Serie A season came to its conclusion as Juventus were crowned the champions of Italy for the ninth successive season. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the 88th edition of the Italian top-flight threw up very few surprises and yielded an expected result at the end.
The Bianconeri were leading the pack by just one point before the coronavirus-enforced break back in March, and despite being far from their best since football returned in Italy, Maurizio Sarri’s men did just enough to uphold their domestic dominance.
Although a few teams challenged the Old Lady this season, in the end, they all fizzled out. Simone Inzaghi’s Lazio were breathing down Juventus’ neck before the break, but they ran out of steam in the final stretch of the season.
Inter Milan, who looked a real threat at the beginning of the Serie A campaign, finished second with 82 points. While Atalanta also looked to challenge Juventus at one point, the likes of Roma, Napoli and AC Milan were too inconsistent to pose a real threat to the Old Lady.
At the other side of the table, Genoa avoided relegation after registering an emphatic 3-0 victory on the final matchday of the season. Meanwhile, Lecce came up short and were relegated to Serie B.
So, after the conclusion of a pandemic-hit season filled with much turmoil, let us have a closer look at the 2019-20 Serie A campaign.
Juventus clinched their ninth successive Serie A title with their lowest points total in the last 10 years. Maurizio Sarri’s men accumulated 83 points, seven less than what they achieved last season.
Cristiano Ronaldo and company were crowned the Serie A champions after matchday 36, thanks to a 2-0 victory at home against Sampdoria. But the Old Lady finished the title-winning campaign in the worst possible manner with two consecutive losses against Cagliari and AS Roma, respectively.
Although Juventus have cemented their legacy in Italy with sheer dominance for almost a decade now, there is no denying that they underperformed and looked out of form in the final stretch of the 2019-20 Serie A season, winning only two of their final eight league fixtures.
European places: Who achieved what?
Juventus, Inter Milan, Atalanta and Lazio have all punched their tickets to the UEFA Champions League next season. Meanwhile, fifth-place AS Roma and Coppa Italia champions, Napoli have booked their place in next season’s UEFA Europa League.
Sixth-placed AC Milan have to go through a Europa League qualifying tie in order to confirm their place in the second-tier continental competition next season.
Both Inter Milan and Atalanta ended their seasons strongly and managed to secure the second and third spots, respectively.
Meanwhile, despite finishing fourth, Lazio’s season was also a success as they played a fearless brand of football which earned plaudits of many. The Eagles were the team who looked most likely to end Juventus’ domestic dominance, but a poor run of form since the restart meant they could only finish fourth.
Who got relegated to Serie B?
After losing 28 matches this campaign, SPAL gave themselves very little chance to remain in the Italian top-flight and were the first team to be relegated to Serie B; they acquired just 20 points in total.
Brescia also endured a disastrous campaign, finishing 19th, and only managed to register six wins throughout the whole season. Diego Lopez’s men will now ply their trade in the second tier of Italian football next season.
Lecce also bid adieu to Serie A on the final day of the campaign. They finished 18th with just 35 points, four less than 17th-placed Genoa, who managed to keep their Serie A status intact.
Surprise Package of the season: Lazio
Simone Inzaghi’s men defied all odds to finish fourth, ahead of heavyweights like AS Roma, AC Milan and Napoli and earned the right to play in the Champions League next season.
For the most part of the season, Lazio seemed to be the only genuine threat to Juventus, and it was only until the last few weeks that the Rome-based club failed to keep their momentum as the Old Lady limped to the title.
Lazio were just a single point adrift of Juventus before the pandemic-enforced break kicked in back in March and caught the eye of many with their courageous brand of football, despite having a very limited squad as compared to Juve.
So, to round it off, Lazio certainly deserve the tag of the surprise package of the Serie A season, given the fact that nobody predicted the Eagles to do so well at the beginning of the campaign.
Speaking of Lazio, special credits should also be given to Ciro Immobile, who single-handedly bailed the club out on multiple occasions throughout the whole campaign, winning the Serie A Golden Boot in the process.
The Italian striker also won the European Golden Shoe after finding the back of the net 36 times in Serie A.
Key Stats from the 2019-20 Serie A season:
- Juventus won their ninth successive Serie A title, taking their tally to 36 in total.
- Lazio’s Ciro Immobile clinched the Serie A Golden Boot with 36 goals to his name; Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo finished second with 31 goals.
- Immobile was also able to secure the European Golden Shoe after outscoring Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski, who scored 34 goals in the Bundesliga.
- Last but not the least, Immobile became the only second player after Barcelona’s Luis Suarez to win the European Golden Shoe in the era of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
- Juventus recorded their worst points haul in the last 10 years, with the Bianconeri managing 83 this season.
- Maurizio Sarri’s men also set an unwanted record of dropping more points from winning positions than any other champion in Italian football history. The Bianconeri dropped 21 points in total from winning position, beating the previous record of 20 set by AS Roma way back in the 1982-83 season.
- Udinese’s Argentine goalkeeper, Juan Musso won the Serie A 2019-20 Golden Glove award after keeping 14 clean sheets in 38 matches.
- Atalanta scored the maximum number of goals (98) this season, while SPAL managed the least (27).
- Antonio Conte’s Inter Milan conceded the least number of goals (36), while Lecce conceded a total of 85 goals – the highest in the division this season.
Also Read: Ciro Immobile: The David who beat 3 Goliaths to win European Golden Shoe