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Serie A

  • April 23, 2011
  • • 20:00
  • • Stadio Olimpico di Torino, Torino
  • Referee: M. Bergonzi
  • • Attendance: 22000

Juventus 2-2 Catania: The Old Lady stunned as Simeone's men pull off remarkable late comeback

Juventus 2-2 Catania: The Old Lady stunned as Simeone's men pull off remarkable late comeback

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Lodi's last minute free-kick ensures Juve are left frustrated after throwing away a two goal lead in the last 15 minutes...

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A last minute Francesco Lodi free-kick rescued a miraculous point for Catania as they came from two goals down to draw 2-2 against Juventus at the Olimpico.

The Old Lady took the lead inside 20 minutes when Alessandro Del Piero dispatched a penalty kick awarded for a handball, before adding his second goal in somewhat fortuitous circumstances.

Alejandro Gomez ensured it was a nervy last ten minutes when he supplied the finishing touch to a fine move and Lodi completed the comeback with the final kick of the game.

Challenges flew in from both sides in the early exchanges as Juve looked to stamp their authority on the game but Catania remained resolute to deny the Old Lady the chance to settle.

Luigi Del Neri's side were awarded a debatable penalty in the 18th minute when the referee blew for a supposed push on Felipe Melo, giving Juventus an early chance to take the lead; Del Piero duly obliged from the penalty spot when he stroke the ball past Andujar to give Juve the lead.

Catania found themselves behind by two when Milos Krasic launched a damaging counter. The Serbian played a well executed one-two before sending a cross into the six-yard box which Silvestre attempted to help on its way.

Unfortunately for the Elephant defender, lady luck was shining on Juventus as the ball struck Del Piero’s face and ricocheted into the back of the net to double the Old Lady’s lead.

Fortune continued to evade Catania when Gomez hit a ferocious drive from outside the penalty area. The strike beat Gianluigi Buffon but the visitors could only watch on in anguish as the ball cannoned off the crossbar, denying the Elephants a spectacular, reviving goal.

Spot On | Alessandro Del Piero scores Juventus' penalty kick

Maxi Lopez was provided with some decent supply early in the second half but his range was wide of the target as the away side looked to half the deficit and stage a comeback.

The Argentine was denied a simple tap in when Lenonardo Bonnucci cut out Adrian Ricchiuti’s cross before it reached the waiting striker. Lopez again came close from the resulting corner but his header just missed the far post.

Buffon was called upon from Gomez’s strike which had the Italian shot-stopper scrambling across to parry it way. The ball fell to Nicolas Spolli who fired over from four yards, only to save embarrassment by the offside flag.

Juve looked to score the decisive third goal and when substitute Luca Toni rose unmarked to meet Krasic’s cross they should have done so but the giant striker’s header was well saved by Andujar to keep the Sicilians in the tie.

Catania then found space down the left hand side and when the ball was played across the six yard box by Gonzalo Bergessio it reached Gomez, who was faced with a simple tap in at the far post to make for a fast-paced finale.

Chances came for both sides as Catania went in search of a late equaliser but the gilt-edged chanced never arrived for the Sicilians. Juve, however, had numerous chances to finish the tie but Pepe and Krasic we both wasteful in front of goal.

Lady luck then chose a second alliance when she rested on the shoulders of Francesco Lodi. The substitute stepped up to convert a free-kick with the last touch of the ball to rescue a point for the Sicilians in the dying seconds.

Juventus will see this as a missed opportunity having squandered a two-goal advantage as their already slim chances of European football next season seem to evaporate even further, whilst for Catania this will prove to be a valuable point as they fight to stay in Serie A.