Live Commentary: Juventus 1-1 Lazio - as it happened

Juventus Federico Peluso during his debut against Sampdoria on January 6, 2013
© AP Photos
Sports Mole's live text commentary of the Coppa Italia semi-final first leg between Juventus and Lazio in Turin.

Juventus and Lazio both went into tonight's Coppa Italia semi-final first leg in fine form and with high hopes of progressing in a clash between Serie A heavyweights.

Antonio Conte's side dominated possession and made the breakthrough early in the second half through Federico Peluso.

Lazio kept going and snatched a vital away goal with just four minutes left when skipper Stefano Mauri tapped home from close range.

Look back on an entertaining match with Sports Mole's minute-by-minute commentary below.


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7.05pmHello Calcio fans and welcome to Sports Mole's coverage of a semi-final clash between two giants of the Italian game.

7.07pmJuventus host tonight's first leg and will be desperate to continue their Coppa Italia run after losing last season's dramatic final to Napoli.

7.09pmLazio travel to Turin hoping to keep their only chance of silverware alive ahead of next week's return leg at the Stadio Olimpico.

7.12pmBREAKING TEAM NEWS The headline team news form Turin is that Andrea Pirlo has failed to recover from a fitness worry and will not feature tonight. Paul Pogba will continue to take his place in central midfield.

7.16pmTEAMS: JUVENTUS: Storari, Barzagli, Bonucci, Peluso, Isla, Vidal, Marrone, Pogba, Giaccherini, Marchisio, Matri

LAZIO: Marchetti, Biava, Cana, Ciani, Cavanda, Gonzalez, Ledesma, Hernanes, Lulic, Mauri, Floccari


7.20pmLet's take a look at some of the interesting selections from tonight's starting XI's. For the home side Alessandro Matri gets a rare chance to prove his worth in attack after seeing his opportunities limited this season. Mauricio Isla also gets the nod in midfield.

7.22pmLazio are unable to call upon start striker Miroslav Klose and have to keep Sergio Floccari in the starting XI. Klose missed the 2-2 draw with Palermo last weekend through injury and his experience will be sorely missed at the Juventus Arena tonight.

7.25pmManchester United fans will have cast a jealous eye over the recent form of Paul Pogba for the Old Lady. The French youngster scored a spectacular brace in last weekend's 4-0 win over Udinese and will be looking to build on that fine form this evening.

7.28pmThis season's Coppa Italia has seen Italy's top sides dominate proceedings. Inter Milan and Roma lurk in the second semi-final, meaning the winner of this season's competition will need quality, consistency and a touch of luck to lift the famous trophy.

7.31pmSpeaking of domination, the Coppa is the only domestic trophy which currently eludes Juve boss Antonio Conte. After his incredible unbeaten run was ended by Inter earlier this season the cup presents a chance to try and trump last season's flawless league record.

7.33pmLazio are not quite out of the title race at this stage and should take heart from their impressive recent league form. Vladimir Petkovic's side are just five behinds Juve in Serie A with half a season still to play.

7.35pmPetkovic is an experienced campaigner and was doing his best to play down Lazio's chances of silverware this week, insisting that Juve are the team to beat.

He said: "Juventus are the strongest team in the league. But in the last 12 games, we’ve got the most points, we are doing well and we want to do even better."

"Tuesday's encounter and the one in Rome will see a great 180 minutes of football. We have to avoid any lapse in concentration which could cost us dearly."


7.38pmTime for me to jinx this evening's match and predict a game with goals and attacking intent from both side's. Juventus are a team which have a number of players capable of breaking the deadlock rather than relying on a prolific central striker. Lazio possess a good record away from home and should be full of confidence. What could possibly go wrong?

7.40pmIf pushed I expect Juve to be too strong in central midfield for the in-form visitors. Pogba is full of confidence and his power and presence could make the difference. I'm going for a 2-1 for the hosts.

7.43pmWe are close to getting underway at the Juventus Arena, which is a stadium that has become a fortress for the Old Lady since they moved from the Delle Alpi three years ago.

7.44pmA raucous atmosphere greets the two sides as they come out onto the pitch. Banners have decked the stadium out in black and white, although noticeably not a capacity crowd in Turin this evening.

0 minJuve quickly establish possession and we are off! The league leaders have a chance almost immediately as Marchisio bursts onto a long ball. His lunge evades the high cross and Lazio get away with an early lapse in concentration.

2 minLazio keeper Marchetti is berating his players, they have made a poor start and are yet to get the ball under control. Juve look bright and are trying to attack in numbers from the outset.

4 minCHANCE! Leonardo Bonucci climbs highest as the back post for Juve but the central defender's effort floats wide of the target. Petkovic will be livid with his side's sloppy start.

6 minJuve are pressing high up the pitch and look hungry to secure a positive result. Marchisio is playing just off Matri at the head of a five-man midfield.

8 minThe visitors mount their first attack and win a corner. Hernanes sends in a cross which is punched away by Storari, but a positive run from Floccari wins a second corner kick.

10 minPogba's impressive range of passing has already been on show. He has launched a couple of diagonal balls in Isla's direction in the opening 10 minutes and follows that up with a header which goes wide of the target.

12 minLuis Cavanda does well to rob Matri off the ball in a dangerous area and prevent Juve from mounting an attack. Cavanda is the latest talent to come from the Belgian conveyor belt and looks a powerful prospect.

15 minJuve are camped in the final third as Pogba and Vidal try to break down the visitors, who have retreated to the edge of their penalty area.

17 minBonucci breaks from defence and finds Peluso in an advanced position. The full-back sends a cross into a dangerous area but Giaccherini's cushioned pass fails to pick out Matri in the six-yard box.

19 minA hopeful thump forward from Ciani gives the Lazio backline a welcome rest. Cavanda races onto the long pass and wins Lazio their second corner of the match.

21 minHernanes sends in a superb delivery which is met by Ciani, but the towering defender can only guide the ball well wide of the target.

23 minLazio concede a dubious free kick after Hernanes tangles with Giaccheri. He takes it and quickly lays off to Isla, who smashes into the wall to earn a corner.

24 minCHANCE! Pogba rises highest to meet the corner and sends his header just over the bar. The Frenchman wants another corner and he may have a case as Mauri looked to get the last touch with a timely block.

26 minMarchisio spreads wide to Giaccherini and Juve are on the attack once more. He sends a looping cross to the far post but Marchetti is well placed to beat the challenge of Matri and catch easily.

28 minPogba is getting the better of Ledesma in a physical midfield battle and in turn dictating play for the home side. The former Manchester United midfielder strides forward but opts for route one when Peluso is available out wide. Lazio have numbers in defence and clear their lines with a punt upfield.

30 minMauri tries one from distance but is drive drifts closer to the corner flag than Storari's goal. During the build-up to that chance Bonucci has gone down for home side and looks to be in some discomfort.

32 minBonucci has left the field for treatment on his back but Juve march up the field untroubled. Peluso has time and space on the wing but fails to pick out a meaningful pass. Frustration is growing here for the home supporters.

34 minCHANCE! A hopeful cross into the area presents Mauri with a race chance after Storari spills under little pressure. The Lazio skipper hesitates and allows Barzagli to clear off the line. A big opportunity goes begging for the visitors.

37 minLazio are growing in confidence as influential playmaker Hernanes finally starts to see some sustained possession in midfield.

39 minIsla gets free on the right and sends a clever ball into the area for Matri, who looks destined to head into an empty net before Ciani's vital interception! An intervention of the highest quality from the Lazio centre-back who has been a calm presence on the field in the first half.

41 minThe pitch at the Juve Arena is starting to cut up and prohibit some of the more creative players on show. Hernanes looks down at the turf in disgust as his touch fails to control a simple pass from Mauri.

43 minSUBSTITUTION! Leonardo Bonucci is unable to continue and Mauri sportingly puts the ball out of play so that he can be withdrawn for Martin Caceres.

44 minCavanda roams forward again and wins a corner for Lazio just before the break. Hernanes curls the ball straight at the first man and that is a wasted chance to get bodies forward for the visitors.

45 min+1BOOKING! The first of three added minutes sees Hernanes take his frustrations at poor delivery out on Vidal and earn tonight's first yellow card for a cynical swipe at his opponent.

45 min+3HALF-TIME Juventus 0-0 Lazio

8.37pmA tight opening half comes to a close with Lazio containing Juve to a handful of half-chances. After seeing out an early wave of pressure from the hosts Petkovic's side looked comfortable heading into the break.

8.40pmPogba was the driving force from the home side, who looked bright in midfield but struggled to get lone striker Matri involved.

8.42pmJuve have looked most threatening from set pieces in the first 45 minutes. Bonuccia and Pogba have both come close with powerful headers but Conte will be frustrated that his side have struggled to play through a spirited Lazio defence.

8.44pmLazio could be ahead if Mauri had shown more intent to throw himself at a chance after Storari dropped the ball in his own six-yard box. The skipper has every right to be disappointed that he made no contact with the loose ball.

8.47pmA quick glance at tonight's substitutes shows that talented forward Mirko Vucinic is on the Juve bench. He could be the right man to inject some creativity into the second half.

8.48pmSebastian Giovinco would have been another exciting player to bring on in the closing stages, but surprisingly Juve's join-top scorer is not on the bench. Neither is the world's most confident striker Nicklas Bendtner, who remains sidelined with a torn abductor muscle.

46 minLazio get the second half underway. Just a reminder that away goals count in the Coppa Italia, so a 0-0 draw may not necessarily represent a positive result for the visitors.

48 minPogba sizes up a shot from distance, which is hardly a surprise after his long-range brace against Udinese. His drive has power but not accuracy and fails to force Marchetti to make a save.

50 minIsla does brilliantly to control a diagonal pass from Pogba and drives towards the penalty area. He checks inside before flashing across goal, but Matri fails to read the cross and Lazio take the chance to clear their lines.

53 minBoth sides have been wasteful in possession since the interval. Matri concedes possession under no pressure and the crowd are on his back. Expect to see Vucinic on in his place shortly!

55 minSAVE! Matri comes agonisingly close to silencing his critics, me included, with a superb volley. He timed a run off Ciani's shoulder brilliantly to meet Marrone's cross but Marchetti produces a fine one-handed stop to keep the game goalless.

57 minMatri's effort is the best moment of the match by far. That is the player Juve signed, a menacing threat in the final third who turns up in the right places to finish chances. If he could rediscover that sense of purpose Juve may be linked with the summer capture of Fernando Llorente.

60 minPogba has dropped slightly deeper in the last few minutes, perhaps to make the most of his long-range passing. Juve have just under half an hour to find the goal which will give them a vital advantage ahead of next week's second leg.

62 minLone Lazio striker Floccari is tracking back more regularly, probably out of frustration at a lack of service more than anything else. Hernanes has been close to anonymous since the break.

64 minGOAL! Juventus 1-0 Lazio (Peluso)

65 minThe home side have make the breakthrough from a fine set-piece. New signing Peluso jumps highest at the far post and plants a downward header past Marchetti into the bottom corner. Advantage Juve!

67 minCHANCE! Matri reads a long pass from Barzagli and bears down on goal but a last-ditch block from Gonzalez prevents Juve from scoring twice in three minutes.

69 minLazio mount a rare attack through Lulic but his cross is too close to Storari and any chance of an equaliser is quickly snuffed out.

71 minDOUBLE SUBSTITUTION! Petkovic decides to try make his first change as Antonio Candreva comes on for Ledesma. Juve also decide to make their second chance as the goalscorer Peluso is withdrawn in favour of De Ceglie.

73 minCHANCE! Vidal has two gilt-edged chances to score in under a minute but fails to convert either. First he has an early strike stopped by Marchetti under pressure before poking the rebound wide from close range. That could be a huge moment in the context of the tie.

75 minSUBSTITUTION! Conte finally introduces Vucinic with his final change of the evening. Marchisio is the player withdrawn, which is hardly a surprise as he continues his recovery from injury.

77 minPogba takes charge of a free kick 20 yards from goal but can only blaze over the bar after putting too much power on the shot.

79 minA tough call for Lazio to make in the final few minutes. Do they try and claim a vital away goal or opt to keep the tie close and hope for a two-goal swing next week at the Olimpico.

81 minCHANCE! A remarkable save from Marchetti to deny Vidal which is reminiscent of Gordon Banks famous save from Pele. Vidal thinks he has scored with a header at the far post but just as the looks ready to cross the line Marchetti scrambles to claw away and clear the danger.

83 minDOUBLE SUBSTITUTION! Last throw of the dice from Petkovic as he brings on Cristian Brocchi and Stefan Radu for Hernanes and Biava. Two strikers on at long past for Lazio with just seven minutes remaining.

86 min GOAL! Juventus 1-1 Lazio (Mauri)

87 minA rare Lazio attack earns the visitors an unlikely breakthrough. Mauri makes Juve pay for a host of missed chances as he pokes home unmarked at the back post from Lulic's corner.

89 minJuve looked stunned and suddenly after being outplayed for a large part of the first leg Lazio become the favourites to progress with that away goal.

90 minCiani picks up a yellow card for making minimal contact with Vucinic on the halfway line. That looked a very harsh decision against the Lazio defender. As the referee hands out the caution his assistant signals for three additional minutes.

90 min+2Giaccherini bursts forward and aims a low shot towards the bottom corner but once again Marchetti is equal to it and makes a comfortable catch.

90 min+3FULL-TIME Juventus 1-1 Lazio

9.40pmThe 90 minutes are up and after a first leg dominated by Juventus we are no closer to knowing who will reach the Coppa Italia final. Stefano Mauri's late equaliser was against the run of play but Lazio will care little as a vital away goal gives them a slight advantage ahead of next week's second leg at the Olimpico.

9.42pmConte will be furious that Juve were not able to close out a match they dominated after Peluso's opener early in the second half. Arturo Vidal and Alessandro Matri were both guilty of spurning good chances and have left Juve needing to score at the Olimpico to stay in the cup.

9.45pmJust time to tell you about a major shock in the English League Cup, with League Two side Bradford City completing a stunning 4-3 aggregate win over Aston Villa to reach the final. A full match report courtesy of my colleague Pascal Lemesre is available by clicking here.

9.47pmThat just about does it for Sports Mole's live text commentary of a finely poised Coppa Italia semi-final, thanks for joining us. Goodnight!

Juventus' Paul Pogba fires in a long-range effort against Udinese on January 19, 2013
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5AC Chievo VeronaChievo11002113
6Sampdoria11002113
7Roma11001013
8Bologna10101101
9Torino10101101
10Genoa10100001
11Lazio10100001
12SPALSPAL10100001
13SassuoloSassuolo10100001
14BeneventoBenevento100112-10
15Udinese100112-10
16Atalanta BCAtalanta100101-10
17Hellas VeronaHellas Verona100113-20
18CagliariCagliari100103-30
19Crotone100103-30
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