After 12 long years of suffering, 12 long years of hardship, struggling with demotion to Serie B, the disgust of mediocrity and the creation of a balanced squad, Juventus are back in the Champions League semifinals.
The quarterfinal second leg performance in Monaco was not what was expected from a team that proved so delightfully technical and tactical in Europe. The squad lacked intensity, composure and attacking ambition. The midfield was incapable of asserting their quality, the forward line failed to make decisions, let alone the right ones, while the inability to release the ball quickly and accurately frustrated the travelling fans. This was not a typical Juve performance, as rarely have they offered a simple whimper when the occasion called for total domination.
Yet perhaps there was no need to be anything more than average against a poor side that failed to exploit their opponent's mistakes. Feeble going forward, the home side had countless opportunities to take advantage of a broken opponent, yet they relinquished possession too swiftly in the final third.
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