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Juve emerge victorious despite valiant Doria display


Juve emerge victorious despite valiant Doria display

Marco Giampaolo named the same ten outfield players that played in the derby against Genoa, with Christian Puggioni replacing the suspended Emiliano Viviano in goal, as Sampdoria welcomed league-leaders Juventus to the Marassi.

Doria started the game with real spark and went close to opening the scoring early on. Fabio Quagliarella hit a diagonal shot that was just inches away from Gianluigi Buffon’s right-hand post. At the other end, however, Juventus were in a far less forgiving mood.

Kwadwo Asamoah sent a teasing ball in from the left and Juan Cuadrado, sprinting through the centre of the box, met the cross with aplomb, smashing a header past Puggioni to give the Bianconeri a 1-0 lead.

While Luis Muriel tried to hit back after fifteen minutes, with a right-foot volley that was easily saved by Buffon, Juventus had their fair share of chances to double their advantage.

Puggioni did well to stop Lucas Torreira sending the ball into his own net, while a goal-bound effort from Mario Mandzukic was blocked inadvertently by Gonzalo Higuain. The Argentinian almost made up for it on 19 minutes, collecting the ball in the box after Karol Linetty lost control, but Puggioni was equal to his attempt.

Bruno Fernandes struck a stinging shot after 36 minutes which the Juve keeper failed to hold, but he just beat Quagliarella to the ball as he lined up the rebound. The Samp frontman then attempted a spectacular bicycle kick just two minutes later, but his effort – struck cleanly – flew wide of Buffon’s goal.

As the first half drew to a close, Puggioni was on hand again to keep Samp in the game, saving from Higuain after the Argentinian cleverly worked some space to shoot with his left foot.

The Blucerchiati started the second period with the desire and determination to draw level; within a matter of minutes, Quagliarella cut in onto his right foot to let fly, forcing Buffon into a smart save.

As Sampdoria pushed forward in search of a leveller, showing tremendous desire and courage to press Juventus, there was more space for the league leaders to exploit. Giampaolo, seeing the need for more bodies in the Doria attack, sent Patrik Schick on in place of Bruno Fernandes around the 53-minute mark.

Another opportunity fell to Quagliarella, who pounced as Asamoah hesitated on the ball inside his own box, but he snatched at his shot which rebounded off the Juve left back. The Samp marksman was involved again just moments later, whipping in a dangerous cross from the right, but Luis Muriel couldn’t get his head on the ball.

With only seven minutes to play, Quagliarella did well to control a cross before showing great improvisation to hit an overhead kick towards the Juve goal, but his effort was too high.

The Samp forward had another opening as the game approached the 90-minute mark, receiving the ball just inside the opposition area. With his back to goal, he managed to work some space for shot but was unable to connect cleanly.

In stoppage time, Luis Muriel broke forward at breakneck speed down the right channel but was brought down by Asamoah just as he approached the Juve penalty area. The Colombian felt he was fouled but the referee allowed play to continue.

The last chance of the game fell to Vasco Regini, who got on the end of a well-taken corner, but his header flew over the bar. Samp may have been defeated but they can hold their heads high after this valiant display against the Champions, and they were cheered off the pitch by the home supporters.

Sampdoria 0-1 Juventus
: Cuadrado 7.

Sampdoria (4-3-1-2): Puggioni; Sala, Silvestre, Skriniar, Regini; Barreto, Torreira (Praet 63), Linetty; Fernandes (Schick 53, Djuricic 75); Muriel, Quagliarella.
Subs not used: Krapikas, Falcone, Simic, Dodô, Alvarez, Palombo, Pavlovic, Djuricic, Bereszynski, Budimir.
Coach: Marco Giampaolo.

Juventus (4-2-3-1): Buffon; D. Alves, Rugani, Barzagli, Asamoah; Pjanic, Khedira; Cuadrado (Lemina 72), Dybala (Pjaca 28), Mandzukic; Higuain (Lichtsteiner 85).
Subs not used: Neto, Audero, Chiellini, Marchisio, Alex Sandro, Bonucci, Sturaro, Rincon, Kean.
Coach: Massimiliano Allegri.

Referee: Tagliavento (Terni).
Assistants: Tonolini and Tegoni (Milan).
Fourth official: Posado (Bari).
Additional assistants: Mazzoleni (Bergamo) and Celi (Bari).
Yellow cards: Regini 83, D. Alves 83.
Added time: 2 + 5 minutes.

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