Juventus 1 - 0 FC Porto: Paulo Dybala penalty seals Juventus passage into last eight of Champions League



Posted Wednesday, March 15, 2017 by PA

Juventus 1 - 0 FC Porto: Paulo Dybala penalty seals Juventus passage into last eight of Champions League

Juventus coasted into the quarter-finals of the Champions League as they saw off 10-man Porto 1-0 in Turin.

Massimiliano Allegri's men were already 2-0 ahead in the tie having come through the first leg in Portugal unscathed, and the Serie A leaders never looked in danger of letting that advantage slip at Juventus Stadium.

Any hope of a comeback from the visitors ended just before half-time when defender Maxi Pereira was sent off for handball on the line and Paulo Dybala slotted in the resulting penalty.

Porto, who saw Brazilian defender Alex Telles sent off in the first leg, had little option but to try to take the match to the Italians as Francisco Soares fired in an early effort on goal, which was straight at Gianluigi Buffon.

After 11 minutes, Miguel Layun was brought down by Juan Cuadrado which saw the Juventus man cautioned and concede a free-kick in a dangerous position on the left.

However, the delivery from Yacine Brahimi was poor, as Juventus hacked the ball away at the edge of the penalty area.

Juventus had a chance to put the tie to bed in the 23rd minute when Mario Mandzukic was picked out in the Porto penalty area by a deep free-kick from Cuadrado.

The Croatian striker, though, could not direct his downward header past veteran Porto keeper Iker Casillas, who overtook Paolo Maldini at the top of the all-time UEFA club appearances list with 175 games.

The breakthrough came five minutes before half-time.

The ball was swung into the Porto six-yard box from a corner, with Alex Sandro sending a header down towards the bottom corner which Casillas palmed away.

Gonzalo Higuain lashed the rebound back towards goal at the far post, where defender Pereira flung himself at the ball, making a block with his arm.

Romanian referee Ovidiu Hategan had little option but to pull out a red card, with Dybala making no mistake from the penalty, scoring low into the bottom right corner to all but kill off the tie.

Both managers made changes for the second half as Porto replaced forward Andre Silva with defender Willy Boly to rejig the backline, while Juventus took off Cuadrado as Marko Pjaca came on.

Porto had a great chance to give themselves a lifeline in the 49th minute when Soares - who has netted nine goals in seven Portuguese Liga games - was through one-on-one with Buffon, but could only curl the ball wide.

Pjaca dragged a shot wide from the left of the Porto penalty area, before Higuain's effort was also just off target as Juve continued to look for a second goal.

Porto almost grabbed a late consolation on the break, but substitute Jota clipped the ball wide after being played into the left side of the Juve penalty area.

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