Europa League: Juventus secure semifinals spot after aggregate win

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Juventus have secured a semifinal ticket after ousting Sporting Lisbon from the Europa League courtesy of a slim win.
Juve had won 1st leg in Italy 1-0 courtesy of a scrappy goal by Federico Gatti. They have now scaled through after a 1-1 draw in Portugal.

En route to their 2-1 aggregate win, The Old Lady put themselves in the driving seat after Adrien Rabiot’s early goal before the host restored parity. The Serie A giant held out under pressure to secure passage into the Europa League semifinal.

This is also a good one for Juve, who had returned to the 3rd spot in the Serie A after learning a couple of hours before this game that their 15-point Serie A penalty had been suspended pending a new trial.

Juve made a perfect start, taking the lead within nine minutes. Sporting defender Sebastian Coates failed to clear a corner, and Adrien Rabiot pounced to fire in on the rebound.

Sporting were given a lifeline with a penalty. Rabiot brought down Ugarte after Marcus Edwards surged down the right past, Alex Sandro. Ugarte converted the spot kick to draw them level.

Ugarte blasted his spot kick over the bar, and Ousmane Diomande’s free header on a corner flashed wide of the far post.
Juventus were looking for another as Di Maria’s half-volley was charged down while Dusan Vlahovic failed to hit the target after the restart when Cuadrado slightly over-hit the pull-back.

Diomande stopped Juventus from making it two with a crucial block as Vlahovic tried to meet the Fabio Miretti assist, while Chiesa fired over from a Vlahovic pass.

Sporting missed great chances when Esgaio blasted his shit wide, while Sebastian Coates missed a sitter when ballooning over the bar from a pull-back.

Juventus will be looking forward to the semifinals and doing well in the league.

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