UEFA Champions League: Roberto Mancini`s Galatasaray stun jaded Juventus

Last Updated: Thursday, October 3, 2013 - 08:11

Rome: Juventus were stunned by a late equaliser in a 2-2 draw at home to Galatasaray after scoring two late goals to virtually seal certain victory in another frustrating Champions League Group B clash on Wednesday.

Juventus dominated throughout but went in for the interval a goal down after Didier Drogba pounced on defensive lapses to give the visitors a 1-0 lead in what was Roberto Mancini`s first match in charge of the Turkish champions.

As Mancini`s men defended in numbers, they looked to be heading for a shock win until Arturo Vidal scored from the penalty spot on 78 minutes after Fabio Quagliarella fell under a soft challenge from Nourredine Amrabat.

Quagliarella gave Juve a shock lead minutes later when he headed past Fernando Muslera from Andrea Pirlo`s perfect delivery.

But as the celebrations began, the hosts were stunned when substitute Umut Bulut beat Gianluigi Buffon from close range after collecting Drogba`s delivery as the Juventus defence proved conspicuously absent.

The result left Juventus, who drew 1-1 away to FC Copenhagen a fortnight ago, still winless with Galatasaray securing their first point under Mancini having been routed 6-1 at home by Real Madrid.

Drogba`s opener came after he pounced on a wayward back pass from defender Leonardo Bonucci and coolly slotted the ball into a virtually empty net after Buffon had raced off his line in panic.

Until then it had been a cagey and at times physical affair, although Juventus were guilty of wasting several chances, the first when Mirko Vucinic chested down for Tevez only for the Argentinian to fluff his shot.

Juve suffered a blow when Vucinic was forced off injured in the 26th minute after stumbling as he ran on to Pirlo`s long ball.

He was replaced by Quagliarella, who failed to make an immediate impact against a side essentially playing on the counter and keeping plenty of men behind the ball.

Swiss winger Stephan Lichsteiner was replaced by Mauricio Isla for the start of the second half and the Chilean made a promising impact, finding space on the right to send several dangerous deliveries towards goal.

Juve picked up the tempo but were struggling to penetrate a tight Galatasaray backline.

However when Pogba threaded a delightful through ball for Quagliarella, only for the ball to be bundled to safety, spirits were raised.

From the resulting corner the ball found its way to Isla on the right and the Chilean came close with a superb volley that went only a metre over.

Moments layer Vidal tried his luck from 20 metres and although Muslera had it covered the midfielders drive was inches over the bar.

Shortly after the hour mark Conte, sensing the danger, sacrificed Bonucci for extra firepower, switching from a 3-5-2 to a 4-3-1-2 to hand Fernando Llorente his Champions League debut.

Relief almost came immediately, Llorente sending a bullet header a metre over from Asamoah`s powerful delivery on the left on 70 minutes.

However it was the tactical nous of Quagliralla which offered the Italian champions immediate hope.

He fell in the area under a soft challenge from Amrabat and Vidal stepped up to beat Muslera with a powerful drive from the spot.

The goal sparked Juve into life and they were rewarded when Pirlo turned on the magic to cross for Quagliarella, who headed past Muslera from close range.

Just as some of the home fans began to leave the stadium convinced the match was won, Galatasaray pounced on another Juventus blunder to stun their hosts with a late equaliser.

Juve`s defence was nowhere to be seen when Galatasaray broke on the counter and Drogba delivered for the unmarked Bulut who beat Buffon easily from close range.

Juve rallied and Llorente was unlucky to see a first-time effort from close in go just wide of the post.

AFP



First Published: Thursday, October 3, 2013 - 09:02

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