Rome, Sep 26: Juventus stretched their unbeaten record in the Italian Serie A football to 44 games with a goalless draw against hosts Fiorentina.
The Viola, as Firoentina are known, gave the Old Lady, as Juventus are commonly callesd, a stern test as they had several penalty appeals turned down in the first half and Stevan Jovetic rattled the crossbar with a header, reports Xinhua.
Fiorentina had the best chances in the second half too, but were unable to find a way past the defending champions.
Fiorentina head coach Vincenzo Montella is proud of his side’s performance against Juventus and claimed “we probably deserved to win.”
“I am definitely satisfied with my lads,” he said. “We probably deserved to win if we had been a little more incisive or perhaps fortunate.
“I must compliment the team and the fans, as it was a wonderful evening of sport. We faced an excellent team with open and attacking football. It’s a shame we didn’t win, but we hold on to the performance and the character of this Fiorentina,” the former Roma striker said.
Juventus stand-in coach Massimo Carrera credited Fiorentina for forcing a bad performance out of Juventus.
“It isn’t always necessary to crush your opponents, as at times you also have to be good at containing them,” he said.
“Fiorentina deserve a lot of credit, as they ran hard for 90 minutes and played very well. We were unable to do what we wanted to.
“We knew Fiorentina would put in the performance of a lifetime, so it was a show of strength for us to keep them quiet and maintain the clean sheet,” he said.
Adam Ljajic was involved in most of the Viola’s attacks in the first half, and he wanted a penalty on two occasions when he went to ground inside the penalty area – but he was given a dressing down by the referee each time.
Ljajic only had himself to blame for not giving the home team the lead in the 41st minute when he dragged his shot wide of the post with only Gianluigi Buffon to beat.
Only seconds earlier, Jovetic beat Buffon with a header, but the crossbar kept the ball out.
Fiorentina held the upper hand in the second half too with Juan Cuadrado going the closest to breaking the deadlock in the 73rd minute with a low shot which was just inches wide of the left-hand upright.