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Football: Conte calls for focus ahead of Bologna test

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Juventus coach Antonio Conte has called for focus from the Serie A leaders ahead of a potentially tricky away fixture at Bologna on Saturday.

Juve's nine-point lead on an inconsistent Napoli side has left many pundits claiming the Bianconeri have virtually secured a 29th league title.

However Bologna have only been beaten three times this year and welcome Juve on the back of three notable wins including a 1-0 victory over Inter Milan at the San Siro last week.

Conte believes a win on Saturday would help silence some of their doubters, but he knows it won't come easy.

"Winning tomorrow would send out a clear message to the rest of the championship - but it won’t be easy," he told reporters at the club's Vinovo training ground.

"We're up against Serie A's in-form team who've won their past three games against strong sides. Bologna can certainly get a result tomorrow."

With the momentum of last week's win over Inter -- who were knocked out of the Europa League by Tottenham on Thursday -- Bologna's fans smell an upset.

On Thursday the club announced a record sell-out of tickets at their 34,415-capacity Stadio Dall'Ara.

"The whole town is waiting with baited breath for this game," said striker Manolo Gabbiadini.

"It's a crucial game for us but we've been preparing for it just as we would every other game because in Serie A you can't afford to be complacent against any team."

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130315/football-conte-calls-focus-ahead-bologna-test