Turin - Carlos Tevez has ended his five-year Champions League goal drought with a
second-half brace to give Juventus a precious 2-0 win over Swedish
champions Malmo in Turin on Tuesday.
Tevez had not scored in the
competition since hitting the net for Manchester United in a 2-2 draw
with FC Porto at Old Trafford on April 7, 2009.
But amid a
dominant display by the Italian champions in Turin, the Argentinian
rekindled the flame to secure a win that leaves Juve level in Group A
with Olympiakos after the Greeks' 3-2 win over Atletico Madrid.
"It doesn't matter I wasn't scoring in the Champions League," Tevez told Sky Sports after the game.
"The important thing is we won tonight and took the points."
Andrea Pirlo and Arturo Vidal still recovering from injury, Claudio
Marchisio had the task of marshalling Juve's five-man midfield with Paul
Pogba and Kwadwo Asamoah, the latter moving a notch inside in place of
wingback Patrice Evra.
At the back, Giorgio Chiellini returned
from suspension but for most of the match Juve's three-man defence had
comparatively little to worry about.
Malmo, who battled through three knockout rounds to reach the group stages, had little to offer.
hosts took command from kick-off but went in for the half-time break
frustrated with what was a poor return from a one-sided encounter.
low ball across the goalmouth in the fourth minute found no takers and
then Marchisio looked offside when he met Evra's cross from the left
with a floated header which 'keeper Robin Olsen had to dive to parry.
first real offensive was met with jeers after Pogba was upended by
midfielder Pa Konate, who earned a yellow card from Polish referee
Buffon's biggest challenge until then was to
rush out and block Magnus Eriksson as the midfielder connected with a
long punt from deep on the right.
Asamoah's move inside of Juve's
midfield was offering more in the way of goalscoring opportunities and
on 19 minutes he missed the target with head and boot on several
Juve, however, spurned their best chance of the half two minutes before the break.
ran on to a defence-splitting pass only for a pass-come-shot drift
agonisingly wide as Asamoah lurked at the far post.
Lichtsteiner squandered another golden chance five minutes after the
restart, the frustration was palpable as fans got up out of their seats.
Pogba's defence-splitting pass sent the Swiss wingback clear on
the right but he opted for a futile pass to Tevez instead of shooting.
But the match, and the stadium, finally burst into life on the hour.
chip found Asamoah to the right of goal and when the Ghanaian responded
with a cool backheel into the Argentinian's path he stepped in to drive
the ball past the outstretched hands of Olsen.
Juve had the ball in the net moments later when Llorente tapped Lichsteiner's low cross into the net but it was ruled offside.
Lichtsteiner, again, got his head to a powerful delivery from Evra but saw his bouncing header go over.
Llorente and Pogba both failed to make contact with Evra's low delivery across the face of goal.
The Spanish international was then denied twice in succession by a superb Olsen, who pulled off a brilliant one-handed save.
made way for Alvaro Morata in the closing minutes and when the Spaniard
won a freekick on the edge of the area Tevez stepped up to curl the
ball inside the far post.