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World Cup 2018

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Home Sport Football

Striker Paulo Dybala set for Juventus return

Mercurial forward has trained normally in the build-up to the Turin derby.

Striker Paulo Dybala is back in the mix for Juventus as they prepare to take on local rivals Torino on Sunday.

The Argentinian has not played for the Bianconeri since January 6 because of a hamstring problem but has returned to full training and could feature.

Full-back Alex Sandro welcomed the news, as he told the club’s official website: “Having Paulo back is very important and means we can raise our level of quality that much more.”

Dybala has scored 14 goals in Serie A already this season and could come back alongside his compatriot Gonzalo Higuain in attack.

Massimiliano Allegri’s men have won eight Serie A matches in a row heading into the Derby della Mole, with their most recent game the 2-2 home draw with Tottenham in the Champions League last 16 on Tuesday.

Sandro insists there is a “positive spirit” in the Juve camp and added: “The draw with Tottenham was not a negative result.

“We played a great game, as did our opponents. In the Champions League, the challenges are always difficult but we’re going to London with the intention of winning and we know we can.”

Torino are unbeaten in five matches under new coach Walter Mazzarri, and have not lost since a Coppa Italia defeat to Juventus on January 3.

Sandro said: “Torino will pressure us as they are a strong team physically with good individuals like (M’Baye) Niang, Iago Falque and (Tomas) Rincon.

“I always had an excellent relationship with Tomas. We still live in the same building and talk plenty, even if maybe these days it’s better to stay apart!”

Juventus head into the game one point behind leaders Napoli.

Torino coach Mazzarri has urged his players not to get caught up in the derby atmosphere and retain their composure.

He told La Stampa: “I need serenity and I explained to the boys how to prepare this match to be calm. All their energies should be channelled positively, it is not a boxing or wrestling match.”

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