Mon, Jun 01, 2015 - Page 18 News List

Juventus, Verona draw 2-2 in final Serie A match

AP, MILAN, Italy

Hellas Verona forward Luca Toni scores against Juventus at the Stadio Marcantonio Bentegodi in Verona, Italy, on Saturday.

Photo: EPA

A last-gasp equalizer saw champions Juventus held to a 2-2 draw against Hellas Verona in their last Serie A match of the season, while Luca Toni netted again to leave him on the verge of clinching the Italian league’s top goalscorer award at the age of 38.

Toni’s equalizer earlier in the second half left him on 22 goals in the fight for the capocannoniere prize, two more than Juventus striker Carlos Tevez and Mauro Icardi, who could still overtake the World Cup winner with Inter to play Empoli yesterday.

“Tomorrow I’ll be relaxed while watching Inter, I don’t get nervous for these things,” Toni said. “These results are down to the whole team. They help me score. I have promised a gift to everyone if I come top of the standings.”

Roberto Pereyra and Fernando Llorente scored for Juventus.

There was late drama as Tevez had a penalty saved before Juventus midfielder Simone Pepe was sent off in stoppage time and Juanito Gomez leveled moments later.

It was the second penalty Tevez had failed to score from this season. Had he netted both, he would now be level with Toni.

Elsewhere, Giacomo Bonaventura scored twice against his former club as AC Milan won 3-1 against Atalanta BC in what was probably Filippo Inzaghi’s final match in charge.

Serie A and Coppa Italia champions Juventus were looking to end the domestic season on a high, a week before attempting to clinch a historic treble against Barcelona in the Champions League final.

Juventus, who had earlier hit the bar through Llorente, went in front three minutes from the interval when Pereyra curled a delightful finish into the top-far corner from just outside the penalty area.

Verona leveled almost immediately after the break as Emil Hallfredsson went on the counterattack and set up Toni for a low drive into the near corner.

If he wins the award, Toni will become the oldest top scorer in Serie A history. Dario Hubner, who was joint-top scorer with David Trezeguet at the age of 35 in 2001-2002, holds the record.

Juventus restored their advantage shortly after the hour mark when Andrea Pirlo’s superb chipped pass was cut back from the byline by Simone Padoin for Llorente to sidefoot home.

They looked set for a 27th league victory when awarded a penalty after Rafael Marquez hauled down Llorente. However, Tevez saw his effort tipped round the post by Rafael — who celebrated with Toni — and the match swiftly swung in the other direction.

Pepe was shown a straight red for a wild foul on Mattia Valoti and moments later Juanito headed in the equalizer to spark scenes of wild celebration.

Juanito also scored a stoppage-time equalizer when the two teams met in Verona last year.

In Bergamo, Atalanta broke the deadlock in the 21st minute when Daniele Baselli was left unmarked to head home a cross from Maxi Moralez.

Milan leveled 15 minutes later after Andrea Masiello fouled Giampaolo Pazzini, who converted the resulting penalty.

And the turnaround was complete two minutes later a Pazzini shot was deflected onto the far post and Bonaventura was there to score. The Italy midfielder, who progressed through the ranks at Atalanta before leaving for Milan last summer, did not celebrate against his old team.

Bonaventura made sure of the result 10 minutes from time. His poor initial effort came back to him off the left post and he rounded Atalanta defender Lionel Scaloni to turn in the rebound.

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