A Derby d’Italia with massive title implications.

The big one is here. Inter vs Juventus is always an occasion, but this edition of the Derby d’Italia rises above and beyond. Just one point separates the two at the top of the Serie A standings, with Inter the ones slightly ahead in what has been a classic title race. A long-awaited head-to-head clash gives the Nerazzurri the chance to open up a bit of breathing room, but anything less than all 3 points for the good guys keeps things as tight as ever.

Juventus hasn’t lost since September, matching Inter stride for stride over the past few months. It hasn’t been quite as flashy (its goal differential is just +23 compared to Inter’s +40), as is expected with a Massimiliano Allegri side, but the results keep piling up. In fact, the first and only time it dropped points since early December was as recent as last week in a 1-1 draw with Empoli. Other than that, Juventus has been a wall defensively with only 13 conceded (2nd behind Inter), which makes its solid but not spectacular attack good enough 90% of the time. The Old Lady has the 4th most goals scored, led by Dusan Vlahovic (12 goals and 3 assists) and Federico Chiesa (6g, 1a). Keeping those two and Adrien Rabiot (3g, 3a) under wraps will be Inter’s main priority on Sunday – by no means can it let Juventus score first and then bunker because that’s Allegri’s bread and butter.

Inter, meanwhile, comes into this weekend having played one game less due to its Supercoppa adventures, although there was no trophy hangover in last week’s 1-0 win at Fiorentina. Though the Nerazzurri will need to step its performance up quite a bit for Juventus, getting all three points by any means possible against the Viola was a must after Juventus tied Empoli. Inter can now enter the derby already in first and not trying to play catch-up – though the pressure will certainly be on no matter what.

Projected Inter lineup (3-5-2): Sommer; Pavard, Acerbi, Bastoni; Dumfries, Barella, Çalhanoğlu, Mkhitaryan, Dimarco; Thuram, Lautaro.

Projected Juventus lineup (3-5-2): Szczesny; Gatti, Bremer, Danilo; Cambiaso, McKennie, Locatelli, Rabiot, Kostic; Vlahovic, Yildiz.

Inter-Juventus is set to kick off on Sunday, February 4 at 20:45 CET / 14:45 EST.