Thursday 11 March 2010, 8:05pm at Stadio Olimpico di Torino, Turin
UEFA Europa League
Juventus
Juventus
3
Legrottaglie 9'; Zebina 25'; Trezeguet 48'
Fulham FC
Fulham
1
Etuhu 36'
Fulham were defeated 3-1 by Juventus at the Stadio Olimpico di Torino on Thursday night in the first leg of the last 16 of the UEFA Europa League.

9' Goal

Nicola Legrottaglie

25' Goal

Jonathan Zebina

48' Goal

David Trezeguet

67' Yellow Card

Nicola Legrottaglie Card was given for a foul

45' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Mauro Camoranesi
Off:Hasan Salihamidzic

61' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Vincenzo Iaquinta
Off:David Trezeguet

74' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Mohamed Sissoko
Off:Christian Poulsen

36' Goal

Dickson Etuhu

84' Yellow Card

Jonathan Greening Card was given for a foul

59' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Clint Dempsey
Off:Simon Davies

0
15
30
45
60
75
90

The first leg of the last 16 of the UEFA Europa League kicked-off in the Stadio Olimpico di Torino on Thursday night when Fulham challenged Italian giants Juventus for a place in the Quarter-Finals.

Fulham got the game underway in their red and black away strip and Roy Hodgson’s team settled into their game quickly and appeared more than comfortable against their Italian counterparts during the early stages.

However after 8 minutes of play Juventus took an early lead. The goal game courtesy of Diego’s corner, after Schwarzer was forced to tip Trezeguet’s goal-bound header wide of goal. From the set piece Legrottaglie steamed into the area and powered his header into the far corner of the net from 8 yards.

Despite the early setback Fulham were not unnerved and after 15 minutes produced a great opportunity for Simon Davies to pull the game level. The Welsh international drifted away from his marker in the area to meet Zamora’s cross from the right by-line but failed to produce a final flourish.

After 25 minutes Juventus’ lead was doubled when Jonathan Zebina scored with a thunderous drive from 25 yards. The right back collected the ball 40 yards from goal down the right channel before skipping past two Fulham players and unleashing an unstoppable drive past Schwarzer into the far corner of the net.

After a dispiriting start to the game and with the Whites facing an uphill struggle, Dickson Etuhu sent Fulham’s 1,500 strong supporters wild when he struck home from 18 yards after 36 minutes. The Nigerian international’s shot came courtesy of Davies’ free kick from the left flank. After the ball ricocheted off a host of players Etuhu stepped up to smash a heavily deflected drive in the corner of the net.

Juventus’ comfortable lead was not only halved but Hodgson’s Team had claimed an all-important away goal, which could yet prove decisive over the two legs. The home side appeared rattled following Etuhu’s goal and before half-time Fulham almost pulled level on three occasions.

First Gera almost nudged the ball past Manninger on the goal line from Duff’s corner before the Juve keeper was forced to save twice from Zamora and Gera before the break.

Fulham were in the ascendancy with Zamora giving the home side’s central defensive pairing a torrid time. However against the run of play Fulham were dealt a crushing blow right on half time when Trezeguet scored to earn Juventus a 3-1 lead.

Schwarzer had pulled off a stunning save to deny Grosso moments before Trezeguet’s strike. The resulting corner fell to the former French international striker, who blasted the ball into the far corner of the net. In truth, Fulham could have been level, instead they faced a two-goal deficit at the half time.

After Juventus had kicked-off the second period of play it took Fulham just five minutes to fashion a superb piece of play which almost rewarded Hodgson’s side with a second away goal. Bobby Zamora beat Juve’s offside trap and raced onto a long ball down the right flank. The striker then drilled a low centre into Gera who flicked the ball goalwards with his back to goal. Only a crucial intervention denied Gera a stunning goal.

Ten minutes later Zamora was at it again, leaving the home side’s defence in his wake down the right flank. Zamora’s second break of the half was perhaps the better opportunity but the striker’s cross to Gera, racing into the area, was once again intercepted on the six-yard line.

Fulham were certainly finding the space behind Juve’s defence, particularly down the right hand side, and a second goal was not only deserved but would have changed the entire complexion of the contest.

Roy Hodgson and Alberto Zaccheroni made attacking changes on the hour mark. For Fulham there was a welcome return to action for Clint Dempsey, who replaced Simon Davies. For Juventus, goalscorer and captain Trezeguet made way for Vincenzo Iaquita, who took his position at the head of the home side’s attacking trio.

Fulham were pushing a higher line as the game wore on and Zamora continued to open Juventus up down the home side’s left flank. With Dempsey and Gera doubling up in the centre Fulham’s offered by far the greater attacking threat, yet a second crucial away goal eluded them.

Fulham continued to push forward during the final ten minutes of the game with their dominance offering great encouragement. Juventus, who had produced no notable attempts on goal during the second half, offered a late threat when Diego fired a 30 yard shot which forced Schwarzer to tip the ball over the cross bar for a corner. It was the last of the action and Juventus ran out 3-1 winners at the end of the first leg.

Fulham will return to the Cottage next Thursday facing a major task but will be offered great encouragement from their performance at the Stadio Olimpico di Torino. The scoreline in no way reflected the balance of play and Hodgson’s side can count themselves desperately unfortunate to be two goals behind returning to SW6.

Match Information

Competition: UEFA Europa League

Date: Thursday 11 March 2010
Kick-off: 8:05pm

Venue: Stadio Olimpico di Torino, Turin
Attendance: 11,402

Referee: Florian Meyer

Juventus

Line-up: Manninger; Zebina, Legrottaglie, Cannavaro, Grosso; Salihamidzic (Camoranesi 45'), Poulsen (Sissoko 74'), Marchisio; Candreva, Diego; Trezeguet (Iaquinta 61')

Unused substitutes: Pinsoglio, De Ceglie, Grygera, Del Piero

Fulham

Line-up: Schwarzer; Baird, Hangeland, Hughes, Konchesky; Duff, Etuhu, Greening, Davies (Dempsey 59'); Gera; Zamora

Unused substitutes: Zuberbühler, Kelly, Smalling, Kallio, Marsh-Brown, Nevland

Juventus (4-3-2-1)
  • 13Alexander Manninger
  • 15Jonathan Zebina
  • 33Nicola Legrottaglie
  • 5Fabio Cannavaro
  • 6Fabio Grosso
  • 7Hasan Salihamidzic
  • 18Christian Poulsen
  • 8Claudio Marchisio
  • 26Antonio Candreva
  • 28Diego
  • 17David Trezeguet
Substitutes
  • 41Carlo Pinsoglio
  • 11Paolo De Ceglie
  • 23Zdenek Grygera
  • 5Mohamed Sissoko
  • 16Mauro Camoranesi
  • Vincenzo Iaquinta
  • 10Alessandro Del Piero
Fulham (4-4-1-1)
  • 1Mark Schwarzer
  • 6Chris Baird
  • 5Brede Hangeland
  • 18Aaron Hughes
  • 3Paul Konchesky
  • 16Damien Duff
  • 20Dickson Etuhu
  • 27Jonathan Greening
  • 29Simon Davies
  • 11Zoltán Gera
  • 25Bobby Zamora
Substitutes
  • 19Pascal Zuberbühler
  • 2Stephen Kelly
  • 26Chris Smalling
  • 33Toni Kallio
  • 44Keanu Marsh-Brown
  • 10Erik Nevland
  • 23Clint Dempsey