Andrea Barzagli has credited Juventus with the ability to do anything, including recovering from long stretches of poor play, after the Serie A side bounced back to advance past Tottenham in their Champions League last-16 tie.
The reigning Serie A champions were down 1-0 to Tottenham at halftime, on the strength of a Heung-Min Son goal after a first 45 minutes that saw Spurs control the play at Wembley Stadium.
Down by a goal on aggregate and needing a least two to advance, Juventus then turned it on for a brief spell in the second half, with Gonzalo Higuain leveling the scoreline in the 64th minute.
Then three minutes later Higuain played in Paulo Dybala behind Tottenham’s defense, with Dybala beating Hugo Lloris to give Juventus the 2-1 lead in the game, the 4-3 lead in aggregate and turning the tie on its head.
And such periods of both feast and famine did not surprise Barzagli, who said after the game that type of performance is exactly what Massimiliano Allegri’s side are capable of.
“We are capable of anything, including 50 terrible minutes and then turning the result around. At a certain point, we started playing well and scored two goals,” Barzagli told Mediaset Premium.
But despite the performance, Spurs nearly nicked an equaliser at the end, with a Harry Kane header rebounding off the post and being cleared off the line in the 90th minute to preserve the Juventus win.
“We had to suffer too and were lucky with that upright, but we need luck in this competition!” Barzagli said.
“At half-time we had to adjust a few things, but above all just had to believe. We started the second half in a bit of a shaky way, but we were facing a really impressive team.
“Juventus proved we were tough and Juve are nothing if not tough.”
Likewise, fellow defender Giorgio Chiellini believed Juventus would have a chance to get back into the contest, but knew they would have to take their chances.
“It was a difficult match, but the match we expected to play,” Chiellini said. “At the end of the first half, despite the many difficulties we clearly had and had predicted in advance, we knew that we were going to get chances and had to take them.
And Chiellini made no apologies for the fortunate bounce off the woodwork late, declaring that Juventus’ experience helped them get through to the quarter-finals.
“We did well and OK, fortune favours the brave, so we earned our luck,” Chiellini said. “We were a team from start to finish and we deserved it.
“Tottenham had their chances and are a fine team, but they’re on the verge of being able to win this type of game.
“Sometimes you just need that spark, maybe a trophy win, but we had our experience and made the most of it in these circumstances.”