Thursday, February 22, 2024
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Milik saves Juventus at Cremonese

MILAN – Arkadiusz Milik made sure what is set to be a troubled new year for Juventus began in the best possible fashion with his last-gasp winner on Wednesday’s 1-0 victory at Cremonese.

Poland forward Milik struck his fifth league goal of the season in added time with a free-kick which handed Juve their seventh straight win, a run in which they haven’t conceded a goal.

His finish moved third-placed Juve to within seven points of league leaders Napoli, who face Inter Milan in the day’s big match.

They also stay two points behind reigning champions AC Milan, in second after their 2-1 win over Salernitana, and will be happy that eyes have returned to the pitch after scandal hit late last year.

Juve have been accused by prosecutors of a variety of financial crimes while UEFA are also probing Italy’s biggest club, whose entire board stepped down in November and will be replaced later this month.

Cremonese are still yet to win a game in their first top flight season since 1996 but they struck the woodwork twice and will be encouraged by successive home draws with Milan and Juve either side of the break for the World Cup.

The away fans drew applause from all sections of the Stadio Giovanni Zini in the first half when they displayed a banner in support of former Italy striker Gianluca Vialli, who is battling pancreatic cancer in London.

Vialli began his career at home-town team Cremonese in 1980 and 12 years later moved to Juventus, where he won the Serie A title in 1995 and the following year’s Champions League.

Juventus’ Polish forward Arkadiusz Milik celebrates after opening the scoring. PHOTO: AFP