Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Juventus 2-1 Monza: Chiesa stunner clinches Coppa Italia progression

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 19 Jan 2023

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Juventus claimed their spot in the Coppa Italia quarter-finals with a 2-1 win over Monza thanks to Federico Chiesa’s sublime strike.

Chiesa, a second-half substitute in Thursday’s clash at the Allianz Stadium, curled in off the post with 12 minutes remaining.

Moise Kean had given Juve an early lead but his effort was cancelled out by Mattia Valoti.

Kean saw what he thought would be a winner disallowed for offside, but Chiesa struck just after to settle the tie.

Nicolo Fagioli spurned a glorious chance for Juve in the opening moments but that miss mattered little as Kean headed Weston McKennie’s cross into the far corner in the eighth minute.

Against the run of play, Valoti struck his third goal in as many Coppa Italia rounds to restore parity – Mattia Perin only able to push the forward’s header into the roof of the net.

Juve’s youngsters responded well, Samuel Iling-Junior firing wide and Matias Soule forcing a diving save from Alessio Cragno, but the hosts could not retake the lead before the break.

Kean came close to a second four minutes after the restart, bounding forward into the area, though Cragno was again on hand for Monza.

Juve had the ball in the back of the net after Danilo’s shot deflected off Pablo Mari and against the crossbar, with Kean heading the rebound home, only for the offside flag to cut his celebrations short.

The pressure finally told in the 78th minute, with Chiesa finding room down the left-hand side of the box and curling an effort in off the right-hand post.

What does it mean? Juve have hope

Juve’s Serie A hopes look all but over after they were thrashed by Napoli last week, but their chances of cup success are very much alive.

A second-string side seldom looked in control, having fair less possession (38.6 per cent), though they did manage two more shots than Monza (11 to nine), and Chiesa delivered the quality when it mattered.

Chiesa back on the goal trail

Last year was a tough time for Italy international Chiesa, who spent the majority of it sidelined after he sustained a knee injury that kept him out of action for a prolonged period.

His wait for a goal has been even longer too, but with his victorious strike, he finally netted in a competitive game for the first time since January last year.

If Juve are to claim some silverware this season, Chiesa is likely to be crucial.

Monza left to rue missed opportunities

Though they tied matters up in the first half after initially conceding, the visitors left it too late for a second wind after the interval in the end.

That will frustrate them, particularly given their dominance of possession, but they mustered only three attempts on target.

What’s next?

Both sides return to Serie A action on Sunday, with Juventus facing Atalanta and Monza preparing to meet Sassuolo.

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