Fri, Oct 03, 2014 - Page 19 News List

UEFA: Atletico talisman Arda’s game-winner sinks Juve

‘FEARED IN EUROPE’:The Madrid club bounced back from their opener loss to sully the Serie A giants’ clean sheet with a 75th-minute strike from lucky charm Arda

Reuters, MADRID

Juventus’ Carlos Tevez, left, and Atletico Madrid’s Arda Turan fight for the ball in their UEFA Champions League Group A match in Madrid on Wednesday.

Photo: Reuters

Bearded talisman Arda Turan reignited Atletico Madrid’s UEFA Champions League campaign when he struck 15 minutes from time to give last season’s beaten finalists a 1-0 win at home to Juventus in Group A on Wednesday.

Beaten 3-2 at Olympiakos Piraeus in their opening game two weeks ago, Atletico hassled and harried the Italian visitors at the Estadio Vicente Calderon and were rewarded in the 75th minute when Turkey midfielder Arda poked the ball into the net.

The stocky playmaker settled an intense encounter in the Spanish capital in which neither side created many clear chances.

It was the first time the Juve defense has been breached this season and the first goal Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has conceded since Atletico’s Uruguay defender Diego Godin beat him at the FIFA World Cup finals in Brazil in June.

The Atletico fans unveiled a banner reading: “Feared in Europe” before kickoff and the home players went after Juventus from the start.

Coach Diego Simeone’s battling troops were deploying the high-intensity pressing game that served them so well last season when they won La Liga for the first time in 18 years and lost to Real in the final of Europe’s elite club competition.

Juve had the lion’s share of possession and came close to a late equalizer when Atletico captain Raul Garcia almost turned a Stephan Lichtsteiner cross into his own net.

“We did not create many opportunities to score, but I think the draw would have been a fair result,” Buffon told reporters.

Los Colchoneros’ next Champions League outing is at home to Malmo FF on Oct. 22, when Juventus play at Olympiakos.

With the Swedish side wining 2-0 at home to Olympiakos in their Wednesday game, the group was left with all four teams on three points from two matches.

At the Swedbank Stadium, Markus Rosenberg’s double sparked jubilant scenes as Malmo beat Olympiakos Piraeus 2-0 in the first Champions League group match to be played on Swedish soil in 14 years.

On a wonderful night for the Group A underdogs, Rosenberg initiated the celebrations by putting the hosts ahead in the 42nd minute, punishing a defensive mixup by snapping up a loose ball and coolly slotting it into the net.

Rosberg struck again in the 82nd, firing into the top right corner after more poor goalkeeping by Roberto for the Greek side.

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