NEWS
Wednesday December 12 2018
CL: Painless Juventus defeat

Juventus hit the woodwork twice and a Paulo Dybala equaliser disallowed, but the 2-1 defeat to Young Boys is painless, as Manchester United also lost.

It’s a remarkable result that ends their 100 per cent away record this season, winning all nine between Serie A and the Champions League, scoring 19 goals and conceding four. Meanwhile, Young Boys were able to celebrate their first ever Champions League group stage victory.

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The Bianconeri were already qualified and Young Boys stuck in last place, but only a victory would ensure they weren’t overtaken by Manchester United to top the group in this final game. Sami Khedira and Andrea Barzagli missed out, with Alex Sandro only fit for the bench, Giorgio Chiellini, Joao Cancelo and Paulo Dybala rested. Midfielder Sekou Sanogo was suspended, with Jordan Lotomba and Miralem Sulejmani injured. Steve von Bergen, who was teammates with a young Paulo Dybala at Palermo, was not 100 per cent fit, but Djibril Sow was passed ready to start.

Cristiano Ronaldo had a huge chance after 13 minutes, running on to a Douglas Costa through ball only to have it fingertipped off his feet by Marco Wolfli, then tried from a tight angle and it was cleared practically off the line by Mohamed Ali Camara.

Ronaldo’s angled drive flashed across the face of goal, inches past the far post, but Juan Cuadrado went off injured for Alex Sandro, moving Mattia De Sciglio to right-back.

Ronaldo nodded over from close range on a taut Federico Bernardeschi cross, then Mandzukic set up Douglas Costa to turn wide with the inside of the boot.

However, Alex Sandro was still cold after coming off the bench and failed to control a poor Douglas Costa back-pass, so when Nicolas Moumi Ngamaleu pounced inside the area, he was wrestled to the ground. Guillaume Hoarau converted the penalty, even through Wojciech Szczesny got his fingertips to it.

Federico Bernardeschi’s free kick went into the wall and Ronaldo drilled the follow-up wide.

The only good news at half-time was that Manchester United were also 1-0 down away to Valencia.

Straight after the restart, a free kick found Alex Sandro at the near post for a deflected flick that smashed against the crossbar.

Ronaldo’s first touch let him down on a Douglas Costa through ball, but Rugani had to be alert to cut out Ngamaleu’s roll across for Hoarau.

Christian Fassnacht was allowed a free header, but too close to Szczesny, as Juve poured forward and inevitably left gaps at the back. Mandzukic couldn’t get enough power to the header, but Young Boys doubled their lead on the counter.

A through ball split the defence, Leonardo Bonucci’s positioning left something to be desire and Hoarau cut inside to drill into the near bottom corner.

Hoarau attempted an overhead kick and it wasn’t far wide from securing the hat-trick, while Douglas Costa blasted just past the far post.

Dybala had scored a hat-trick in Turin and came off the bench to find the net in Switzerland too, Ronaldo laying it off to the edge of the box for his absolute screamer.

Ronaldo had penalty appeals waved away for a nudge in the back as he went to head the ball, then Dybala forced a low save from Wolfli.

Juve thought they’d equalised on 87 minutes, but Ronaldo’s header at the back post was on to the upright from point-blank range.

Another header from Leonardo Bonucci was too close to the goalkeeper and deep into stoppages Dybala had another absolute stunner in the back of the net from distance, but it was disallowed as Ronaldo was offside in front of the goalkeeper.

It ultimately proved painless, as Manchester United lost 2-1 in Valencia, so Juventus are still group winners.

Young Boys 2-1 Juventus

Hoarau pen 30, 68 (YB), Dybala 80 (J)

Young Boys: Wolfli; Mbabu, Camara, Benito, Garcia; Sow (Wuthricht 91), Lauper, Aebischer; Moumi Ngamaleu (Schick 85), Hoarau, Fassnacht (Bertone 80)

Juventus: Szczesny; Cuadrado (Alex Sandro 23), Rugani, Bonucci, De Sciglio (Dybala 72); Bernardeschi, Bentancur, Pjanic (Emre Can 65), Douglas Costa; Ronaldo, Mandzukic

Ref: Stieler (GER)