Juventus claim controversial win

Arturo Vidal hit the only goal of the game as the unbeaten Serie A leaders secured a fiesty win against Catania.

    Juventus claim controversial win
    Tempers flared after Catania had a man sent off and a goal wrongly ruled out for offside in the first half [GALLO/GETTY]

    Defending champions Juventus extended their unbeaten streak to 48 games with a controversial 1-0 win at 10-man Catania in Italy’s Serie A on Sunday after the Sicilian side had a goal disallowed.

    Catania thought they had taken a first-half lead when Gonzalo Bergessio fired in but the strike was ruled out after almost a minute of deliberation.

    The reason for the disallowed goal was not immediately clear - either offside or a handling offence.

    In the aftermath of the decision, Catania President Antonino Pulvirenti was banished from the bench and in the ensuing five minutes five of their players were booked as tension between the sides rose.

    To add insult to injury, Nicklas Bendtner appeared in an offside position in the build-up to Arturo Vidal's second-half goal.

    Giovanni Marchese was sent off after receiving his second booking to cap a miserable day for Catania.

    Pulvirenti fuming

    Pulvirenti was still visibly irate after the match.

    "It's not only that our goal was disallowed, but Juve's goal was offside,'' he fumed.

    "It's the third time decisions have gone against us after the matches against Parma and Inter. An offside goal for them and a good goal which wasn't given to us ... What's most absurd is that the goal was ruled out by the Juventus bench, the linesman had given the goal. The goal was ruled out only after Juve's protests. It's a scandal, a disgrace," he continued.

    "They gave our goal and then ruled it out after the protests. Mistakes can happen, but decisions can't be changed after protests from the bench. I want explanations.''

    The stadium rocked with chants of "thieves, thieves'' from the disgruntled Catania fans at the end of the match.


    Results & fixtures

    Saturday 27 October

    Siena 0-0 Palermo
    AC Milan 1-0 Genoa

    Sunday 28 October

    Catania 0-1 Juventus
    Bologna 1-3 Inter Milan
    Fiorentina 2-0 Lazio
    Pescara 0-0 Atalanta
    Sampdoria 0-1 Cagliari
    Torino 1-3 Parma
    Napoli v Chievo
    Roma v Udinese

    "On the pitch we didn't see much,'' Juventus assistant manager Angelo Alessio said.

    "The linesman lifted his flag, then I don't know what happened. No, the Juventus bench didn't do anything. The linesman was talking to the official and he made the decision. Some of our players who were closer to the incident went to the officials. A mistake can happen and it's a shame, but we played our game and wasted several scoring opportunities.

    "We took control from start to finish and dominated with 11 shots on goal ... There was only one team on the field - Juventus - and Catania defended well. An incident can happen, we should all just move on.''

    In control

    Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon kept another clean sheet on his 500th Serie A appearance.

    With Claudio Marchisio and Lucio injured, Paul Pogba and Bendtner made their first Serie A starts.

    Juventus should have taken the lead in the 14th minute when Andrea Pirlo's free kick was cleared but only as far as Kwadwo Asamoah, who unleashed a fierce shot from 30 yards, which flew just over the bar.

    Catania goalkeeper Mariano Andujar did well shortly afterwards to keep out Bendtner's header.

    Catania had not won this fixture since 1964 but were putting pressure on Juventus. They thought they had broken the deadlock in the 25th minute. Nicolas Spolli's header clipped Francesco Lodi and came off the post, and Bergessio was on hand to smash in the rebound. Catania players were still celebrating when the referee disallowed the goal after consulting with his assistant.

    It was not clear whether it was ruled out for offside or for a handling offence by Lodi, however replays showed it had come off the Catania player's knee.

    Juventus then came close to taking the lead several times towards the end of the half.

    Pogba sent a 30-yard strike just over before a scramble in the area saw Catania gift the ball to Mirko Vucinic but Nicola Legrottaglie recovered in time to block his effort.

    Vucinic had another chance when Bendtner knocked down a cross but Andujar pulled off a save to deny the Montenegro striker from point-blank range.

    Juventus took the lead in the 57th minute when Bendtner, who appeared to be offside, had his effort parried by Andujar but Vidal was on hand to follow up. Vidal could have doubled his tally shortly afterwards but he fired wide of the right upright.

    Marchese received his second booking and was dismissed when he handled in the 67th minute.

    Andujar pulled off another stunning save 10 minutes from time to deny substitute Sebastian Giovinco. Giovinco then went on a run in stoppage time but a woeful finish saw his effort fly well over the crossbar.

    Inter win

    In the day’s other games, Inter Milan are four points behind Juventus after beating Bologna 3-1.

    Inter have now won all five away games this season, but will be severely tested at Juventus next weekend.

    Fiorentina missed a penalty but beat nine-man Lazio 2-0.

    Parma beat 10-man Torino 3-1. Nicola Sansone, Amauri and Aleandro Rosi scored after Torino's Gianluca Sansone was sent off following a second yellow card for diving. Migjen Basha grabbed a consolation for Torino.

    Elswehere, Daniele Dessena scored against his former club to help Cagliari beat Sampdoria 1-0.

    Pescara drew 0-0 at home to 10-man Atalanta. Federico Peluso was sent off at the start of the second half following a second yellow card.



    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Explore how your country voted on global issues since 1946, as the world gears up for the 74th UN General Assembly.

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.