Monaco 0-0 Juventus (agg 0-1): Italians hold on to reach last four
By Gerard Brand
Last Updated: 23/04/15 6:19am
Juventus progressed to the Champions League semi-final after a goalless draw at Monaco meant they went through 1-0 on aggregate.
In a game bereft of clear chances, Juventus hit the crossbar in the closing minutes through Andrea Pirlo's free-kick, after Carlos Tevez’s long-range flew wide in the first half.
Gianluigi Buffon’s mistimed punch was cleared off the line by Patrice Evra in the second period for the hosts’ best opening, but Juventus held on to reach their first Champions League semi-final since 2003.
Monaco had more of the ball throughout, but couldn’t turn their domination into clear-cut chances.
Bernardo Silva broke free down the right byline early on, but his cutback was turned narrowly wide by the foot of Juve defender Andrea Barzagli, before Geoffrey Kondogbia’s long-range effort fell into the hands of Buffon.
The hosts could have had a penalty after 35 minutes when Arturo Vidal and Giorgio Chiellini sandwiched Kondogbia on the corner of the area, but Scottish referee Willie Collum waved play on.
Juventus had to rely on the counter-attack for the opening 45 minutes, and only had their first half-chance on the stroke of half time, Tevez sliding wide from 25 yards.
Monaco’s best chance came five minutes after the break when veteran goalkeeper Buffon failed to punch clear Joao Moutinho's cross, but the ball rolled across Evra’s shoulder instead of falling into the path of the waiting Anthony Martial three yards out.
Juventus then had the chance to take a 2-0 aggregate lead into the final third of the second leg, but Alvaro Morata failed to find Tevez as they broke two on one.
Monaco pushed for an equaliser in the tie for the final 20 minutes, but Dimitar Berbatov’s half-time introduction had little impact on their attacking play.
Pirlo hit the crossbar with a superb dipping free-kick from 35 yards in the final minute, and Massimiliano Allegri’s side held on for a first last-four appearance since they reached the final in the 2002-03 season.
You can find out who Juventus, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Barcelona will play in the semi-final draw at 11am on Friday on Sky Sports News HQ.