Juventus looks to clinch Serie A title against Palermo
MILAN (AP) -- Defending champion Juventus needs only one point against struggling Palermo on Sunday to clinch a 29th Serie A title, and put its darkest period even further behind it.
The Italian team last won back-to-back titles in 2005 and 2006 but was then stripped of both and relegated to Serie B in a wide-ranging match-fixing scandal that rocked Italian football.
"Now we just need one point and winning the Scudetto with three games remaining would be extraordinary,'' Juventus coach Antonio Conte said. "However, I'll continue to hammer away at the players until we've won the title, and they're fully aware of that.''
It won't be easy against a Palermo side desperate for the points to avoid the drop.
Five matches without a loss have seen Palermo move out of the bottom three. It is level on points with 18th-place Genoa, but has a better head-to-head record.
Also, second-place Napoli hosts Inter Milan sitting 11 points behind Juventus with four matches remaining.
In the battle for third spot and the final Champions League place, AC Milan welcomes Torino and Fiorentina entertains Roma.
"We're going to Turin to win, knowing that we have about a two-percent chance,'' Palermo president Maurizio Zamparini said. "But the only useful result is a win, it's a desperate match. There will be 11 against 11 on the pitch. We're going there to fight, but everyone says that.
"The fight for survival is wonderful if it's done rightly. What Palermo has managed to do in its past few games is down to the passion and ardor it didn't have before.''
Genoa faces a relegation dogfight when it hosts bottom club Pescara, which knows that anything but a win would officially condemn it to Serie B.
Pescara is 10 points behind Genoa and Palermo.
Siena is just two points behind and it visits Catania.
Torino also needs a result at San Siro to avoid being dragged into a relegation scrap. It is just four points off the drop.
However, Milan is only a point above Fiorentina in the battle for third.
"The win at the weekend gave us three valuable points,'' Milan defender Mattia De Sciglio said. "We moved back into third place and demonstrated we are not going to give up a top three finish easily.
"With four games left we know what we have to do, keep a distance on fourth place and give our best to keep picking up three points. There's no point thinking about what Fiorentina will do, we need to focus on ourselves.''
Fiorentina hosts Roma on the Saturday, with the capital club fighting for a Europa League spot.
It is in fifth place, a point above Udinese, which is looking for its fifth consecutive win when it welcomes Sampdoria.
Inter Milan is a point further back, but things are looking bleak for Andrea Stramaccioni's side, as its injury crisis deepened when captain Javier Zanetti tore his Achilles tendon in Sunday's 1-0 defeat at Palermo.
Lazio also still has hopes of qualifying for Europe and it hosts Bologna.
Elsewhere, it's: Chievo Verona vs. Cagliari, and Parma vs. Atalanta.
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