Moise Kean’s close-range header proved enough for Juventus to seal a 1-0 win against Roma in a game that will be best remembered for a controversial VAR decision just before half-time.
Juventus’ fourth consecutive win in Serie A could have been spoilt by a Tammy Abraham ‘goal’ in the 42nd minute, but referee Daniele Orsato blew for a penalty in the build-up to him putting the ball in the net and the subsequent spot-kick from Jordan Veretout was saved by Wojciech Szczesny.
The result means Juventus move up into seventh position. Roma, meanwhile, remain in fourth on 15 points and two behind third-placed Inter Milan.
For all of Roma’s possession dominance in the opening quarter-hour, Juventus took the lead through Kean. A fine cross into the box from Mattia De Sciglio was nodded towards goal by Rodrigo Bentancur, off the Everton loanee and into the net.
Roma pushed hard for an equaliser and they thought they had it when Abraham tapped the ball into the net on the stroke of half-time, but instead referee Daniele Orsato blew for a foul on Henrikh Mkhitaryan in the build-up as he was brought down by Szczesny inside the box.
A VAR check for the penalty was awarded and there was a disagreement between Abraham and Jordan Veretout over who should take it. The latter stepped forward and saw his spot-kick saved by Szczesny.
Kean somehow failed to convert from point-blank range in the 52nd minute when a Federico Bernardeschi overhead kick was spilt into his path before there was more VAR drama moments later.
Lorenzo Pellegrini went down in the box claiming a spot-kick as he fell over when Giorgio Chiellini cleared the ball. Referee Orsato decided not to give anything. After a one minute and 44 second check, the VAR officials agreed with Orsato and no spot-kick was awarded.
Roma went in search of a winner with Veretout curling a strike just wide and Matías Vina having a close-range shot characteristically blocked by Chiellini in the nick of time, but Juventus held on for an important three points in a tight contest.