Juventus took a step toward the Europa League quarterfinals with a
3-1 win over Fulham in the first leg of the last 16 on Thursday.
Defenders Nicola Legrottaglie and Jonathan Zebina scored in
the ninth and 25th minutes to put the Italian team in charge before
Dickson Etuhu pulled one back for Fulham in the 36th minute.
David Trezeguet restored Juve’s two-goal lead just before
halftime, giving his side a healthy advantage heading into next
week’s return leg in London.
Trezeguet had been outspoken before the game about Juventus
needing to win a trophy again, having gone three seasons since
being stripped of two Serie A championships due to the Italian
Legrottaglie scored with a header following a corner kick,
Zebina found the target from the edge of the area after dribbling
past two defenders and Trezeguet first hit the post before knocking
in his own rebound for the third.
Midfielder Etuhu’s shot deflected in off Legrottaglie for a
crucial away goal for Fulham.
With Gianluigi Buffon out for a month with a thigh injury,
Juve’s reserve goalkeeper Alex Manninger made a good save from
Brede Hangeland in the 40th minute and then kept out a shot from
Bobby Zamora four minutes later.
Clint Dempsey came on as a substitute for Fulham in the 61st
minute for his first appearance in almost two months. The United
States midfielder has been out of action since sustaining a knee
injury in a Premier League match against Blackburn on Jan. 17 but
could not inspire Fulham to score a second goal at the Stadio
Diego and Vincenzo Iaquinta had chances for Juve in the final
minutes of the second half.