Juventus Top Performers – Coppa Italia semis vs Milan

Juventus showed modest improvement compared to their last two road showings and managed to obtain a positive result out the San Siro clash with Milan despite letting the opponents have their way for the majority of the game.

Gianluigi Buffon: the back-line for the most part did an okay job in holding in check the opponents, which did not manifactured many clear-cut chances despite having the lion’s share of possession, then the veteran goalie stepped up when he needed to, with a pair of strong saves, in particular on an Ante Rebic’s effort under the bar in the first half and then coming out on the Croatian attacker after intermission. He lacked some explosivity on the goal, but the shot was probably involuntarily deadly precise. Mattia De Sciglio fared decently for about an hour but was caught ball-watching on that occasion, hence soiling his performance. Leonardo Bonucci and Matthijs De Ligt teamed up to combat Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the air and the duel basically ended in a duel, even though the Dutch starlet had a pair of meh moments. Nothing out of the ordinary from Alex Sandro.

Juan Cuadrado: back in his element for a large chunk of the contest, he provided his usual amount of dynamism and activity from his ‘old’ right winger position, not always with a fine touch but he carried most of the offensive load. He uncorked a great cross on the action that led to the penalty. Miralem Pjanic looked a bit better than his last display, but he is still distant from his level at the beginning of the season. Aaron Ramsey touched a lot of balls, but he was not very polished and at times simply seemed to wonder around without a precise idea. Blaise Matuidi had more giveaways than positive plays and the flow simply stops when the ball gets to him. Rodrigo Bentancur and Adrien Rabiot at this point of the season are clearly the right choices for the two box-to-box spots and further proved it even in limited minutes.

Cristiano Ronaldo: he came through even in a frustrating night when the opponents did a masterful job in clogging up the middle and throw multiple men at him and his teammates rarely found him with accurate passes or in dangerous areas. He almost pulled one out of the hat with the acrobatic finish that was stopped by a handball and then was clutch as always from the penalty spot. Paulo Dybala was in general the most involved striker throughout the night, pulled off some interesting runs and interplayed well with his teammate. However, in part due to the Milan’s defensive castle, he rarely got to deal and wheel near the box and flunked a pair of opportunities to shoot.

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