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Holders Juventus into Italian Cup semi-finals


Turin (Italy) (AFP) – Douglas Costa and Mario Mandzukic scored in either half as defending champions Juventus advanced to the semi-finals of the Italian Cup on Wednesday with a 2-0 win over city rivals Torino.

Brazilian Costa opened after quarter of an hour in the Allianz Stadium with Croatian Mandzukic adding the second amid controversy on 69 minutes to set up a meeting with Atalanta, who eliminated Serie A leaders Napoli 2-1 on Tuesday, in the final four.

Lazio, finalists in 2017, will meet AC Milan in the other semi-final played over two legs on January 31 and February 28.

The winning team will earn a direct entry to the group stages of the Europa League.

Torino suffered badly during their last meeting with Juventus 4-0 in September but this time came close to scoring through Mbaye Niange just after Costa’s opener.

But they were no match for the record 12-time winners with Costa almost getting a second after 59 minutes with Paulo Dybala also on form.

Mandzukic beat the offside trap to lob over Vanja Milinkovic-Savic in the Torino goal, with the goal confirmed by the referee after consultation with the video assistant referee (VAR) to the fury of coach Sinisa Mihajlovic who protested that Afriyie Acquah was fouled by Sami Khedira.

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