Italian side Juventus are the first team to book their place in the final of the Champions League after beating AS Monaco 2-1 in Turin and 4-1 on aggregate. Germany World Cup winner Sami Khedira and his side can continue to dream of a first treble in the club’s history and legendary Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has another shot at a Champions League final after goals from Mario Mandzukic (33’) and Dani Alves (44’) saw the ‘Old Lady’ through. Kylian Mbappe (69’) netted a consolation for the French side.
Juve will pay either Real Madrid or Atletico Madrid in the final in Wales. Real Madrid and Toni Kroos hold a 3-0 lead over their city rivals going into tomorrow’s second-leg. Juventus last won the competition back in 1996 and could meet Real for a repeat of the 1998 final which the Spanish side won 1-0.
Khedira forced off with thigh injury
Khedira won the biggest prize in European club football with Real Madrid in 2014. Khedira could help Juve become the first Italian team since Inter Milan in 2010 to win the competition.
Khedira, who was suspended for the first-leg in Monaco, had to go off after just ten minutes of the second-leg tonight with what appeared to be a hamstring injury. He was replaced by Claudio Marchisio.
Mandzukic and Alves on target for Juve
Even without Khedira, Juve, who last reached the final of the Champions League in 2013 when they lost 3-1 to Barcelona, overcame the French league leaders with relative ease. Argentina international Gonzalo Higuaín, who scored both of Juve’s goals in the first-leg, and Mario Mandzuzkic, passed up opportunities in the first half an hour.
After some great work from Alves, who set up Higuaín for both goals in Monaco last week, Mandzukic put Juventus into the lead and Alves doubled their advantage just before half-time with a sublime volley.
Juve to be crowned champions this weekend?
Juve didn’t do anything more than was necessary in the second-half in front of 40,244 fans. Monaco kept going and were rewarded with a consolation goal from Mbappe.
Juventus can win their sixth consecutive Serie A title on Sunday when they play AS Roma (20:45 CEST). The Italian giants are also in the final of the cup and were due to play Lazio on 2nd June, but that match will now have to be postponed.