Defending champions Juventus secured a record-equalling fifth consecutive Serie A title on Monday after Roma struck late to beat second-placed Napoli 1-0.
5 – Juventus are the first team to win 5 league title in a row for the second time in Serie A. Queen. pic.twitter.com/UwTXf6y6Yu— OptaPaolo (@OptaPaolo) April 25, 2016
Juventus, emulating their feat of 1935 when the Turin giants won a fifth straight title for the first time, had gone 12 points clear of Napoli with a 2-1 win at Fiorentina on Sunday when goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon made a last-gasp penalty save from Nikola Kalinic.
“It was an epic title, won thanks to an unbelievable comeback,” said Juventus captain and goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon in reference to Juve’s fightback from a dismal start to their title defence.
“I’m super happy to make history with this team, it’s priceless,” said Argentine striker Paulo Dybala, who has hit 16 goals this season to sit second in Serie A’s scoring charts behind Gonzalo Higuain (30).
“It’s amazing to win the league title with Juventus. I hope there are many more to come.”
Paul Pogba during the Juventus Serie A title celebrations. 😂 pic.twitter.com/THSA0M2hno— Footy Jokes (@Footy_Jokes) April 25, 2016
While Roma celebrated their victory, the big party was going on in Turin, where thousands of fans watched the Napoli game on big screens in anticipation of their side’s title triumph.
There were also jubilant scenes at Juve’s Vinovo training ground, where the Turin giants celebrated the result in Rome with a giant bottle of champagne.
Meanwhile, Juve coach Massimiliano Allegri, who was rumoured to be close to the exit door last autumn following a disastrous start to their title defence, underlined the champions’ impressive comeback in a series of posts on Twitter.
“I always say that you can only improve by enduring the hard times. Looking at our season, it makes me even more proud,” said Allegri, who steered Juventus to their first league and Cup double in 20 years in his first season in charge last year, as well as a first Champions League final appearance in 12 years.
Napoli had to beat Roma to have any chance of maintaining their bid for a first title in 26 years, but Maurizio Sarri’s men were stunned when Radja Nainggolan hit an 89th-minute winner for the hosts at the Stadio Olimpico.
It left Juve 12 points clear of Napoli with only three games remaining this season. Napoli remain second but are now just two points ahead of Roma as the pair battle for the league’s second automatic Champions League qualifying place.
Juve defender Leonardo Bonucci, who was seen soaking fans waiting at the gates of Vinovo with champagne, told Sky Sport: “They had us dead and buried in October, but Juve never die.”