Juventus took one step closer to the Champions League final as they defeated Monaco 2-0 away from home.
Gonzalo Higuain scored both the goals for Juventus on the night. With two precious away goals and a rock solid defense to protect it in the second leg, Juventus are all almost through to the finals. Eventually, if they manage to reach the grand stage, this will be their second final in three years.
Best Defence in Europe?
Higuain started off the scoring in the 29th minute of the match through a Danny Alves assist. Then the second goal for Higuain and Juventus was also set up by Alves. With two precious away goals, Juve have more or else killed off the two-legged tie. Unless Monaco can pull off something magical in the second leg. But that would be easier said than done against a such a strong Juventus defense.
Juventus pulled off a very gritty performance on the night. Especially at the back. In the first quarter of the game, Buffon did have to make a low-lying save from a Mbappe header. But for the rest of the match he more or less a mere spectator. Paulo Dybala did a few wonderful moments of magic in the match but other than that his presence was not much required.
Bonucci was troubled by the pace of Mbappe in the early stages of the match but recovered quite well to other the youngster no more chances. Chiellini was also rock solid in defense as usual but was lucky to be still on the field after elbowing Radamel Falcao. He escaped with only a yellow card against his name. Paulo Dybala did a few wonderful moments of magic in the match but other than that his presence was not much required.
Average performance by Monaco:
Monaco, on the other hand, had a very average sort of a game. Mbappe did trouble the Juve defense early on in the match and his header almost found the back of the net. But as the game went by his presence slowly faded away. Monaco’s charismatic striker Radamel Falcao was also a bit subdued in the match. To be fair to him he did not receive much service to feed upon. But he did get a few good chances and going by his standards he should have equalised for Monaco.
Monaco travel to Turin to take on the Old Lady in the second leg of the semi-finals. Monaco will know deep down that it will be an uphill task to turn around a two-goal deficit away from home. That too against Juventus. But they will certainly not lose hope and try to perform out of their skins.