The Friulani went down to 10 men in Bergamo, but the heroics of goalkeeper Samir Handanovic kept Atalanta out for a 0-0 draw.
Udinese coach Francesco Guidolin remarked: “I didn’t like the first half, while we improved after the break and I would’ve liked to play it to the end with 11 men on the field. I compliment Atalanta because they are a strong side who deserve their points.
“I can sense a certain enthusiasm in the city and fans think it’s easy to repeat what we achieved last season, while I believe it to be extremely difficult, especially as the table is so tight at this stage.
“We must keep our feet on the ground. I know our status now and I’d put comparisons with last season aside, as it is a very different team. Particularly away from home, what we did cannot be repeated.”