Juventus left it late to beat Udinese by 1-0 at the Allianz Stadium in Turin on Saturday night. This was the Bianconeri’s eighth consecutive league victory without conceding a goal. The result meant that Juventus have closed the gap to just four points to league leaders Napoli who have a game in hand.
Brazilian defender Danilo scored the only goal of the game in the 86th minute to overcome a spirited Udinese side who will surely feel that they had done enough to secure at least a point from the game.
There was a one minute silence prior to kickoff in honor of Gianluca Vialli who sadly passed away earlier this week.
World Cup winner Angel Di Maria started for the home side and the tinkle toed winger almost setup the first goal of the match. The Argentine’s sublime cross in the 19th minute was met by Daniele Rugani but Udinese keeper Marco Silvestri pulled off an incredible reflex save to keep the scoresheet level.
Di Maria, continuing his fine form then setup Moise Kean with a splendid through ball but the Italian striker’s low effort was once again blocked by Silvestri. Udinese were content to sit back and soak up the pressure and looked to play on the counterattack. The traveling side managed to have only two shots on target in the first half hardly troubling Wojciech Szczesny in the Juventus goal.
The Old Lady had two glorious opportunities to go ahead after the restart, but it was Kean again who fired just inches over the bar while Adrien Rabiot’s ball from the wing evaded everyone in the box with the Udinese goal wide open. Di Maria came off with a calf problem after a wonderful creative performance as Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri rang his changes from the bench in search of the breakthrough goal.
The home side finally broke the deadlock four minutes before the end when substitutes Leandro Paredes and Federico Cheisa combined. The Argentina floated in a ball for the latter who controlled with his chest before volleying it across the face of goal where Danilo was left unmarked and the Brazilian slotted home with a tap in at the back post.
Chiesa could have got a goal of his own in stoppage time as Juventus ran out with three crucial points in the bag. Allegri’s mean who started the campaign poorly will now look to mount a serious title challenge should they keep on grinding results like on Saturday night.
Photo credit: IMAGO / Marco Canoniero
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