Juve secure costly win in derby

February 19, 2018
Torino's Cristian Ansaldi (right) and Juventus's Alex Sandro (centre) fight for the ball during the Italian Serie A match between Torino and Juventus at Turin's Olympic Stadium, Italy, yesterday. Juventus won 1-0.


ROME, Italy (AP):

Juventus' 1-0 derby win over Torino came at a high cost with both prized striker Gonzalo Higuain and his replacement, Federico Bernardeschi, coming off with injuries.

The status of each player will be big concerns for Juventus' pursuit of a seventh straight Serie A title as well as the return leg of the Champions League last 16 against Tottenham.

Higuain was left grimacing on the pitch three minutes in after making contact with Torino goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu, who broke up a Juventus chance.

After staying on for another 10 minutes, Higuain exited and was replaced by Bernardeschi.

Less than 20 minutes later, Bernardeschi set up Alex Sandro's goal, dribbling past a defender then providing the cross for Sandro to tap in from close range.

Bernardeschi exited late in the second half.

Juventus said later that Higuain has a bruised and twisted left ankle, while Bernardeschi has a more serious left knee problem.

Higuain will likely miss next weekend's match against Atalanta, while Bernardeschi could be out for up to a month.




On a positive note, Juventus were encouraged that Paulo Dybala came on for the final 25 minutes for his first action after several weeks out injured.

Three days after losing 3-1 to Leipzig in the Europa League, leaders Napoli had a strong start against Spal.

The hosts showed their intentions immediately when Lorenzo Insigne hit the post four minutes in.

Two minutes later, Allan scored following a series of short, mesmerising passes that have characterised Napoli's play all season.

Napoli captain Marek Hamsik thought he had doubled the advantage shortly after the hour mark but his header was waved off for offside after the VAR was consulted.

Napoli have also won nine straight, a club record for a single season.

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