Juve held, Allegri wary of Monaco
Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri underlined the potential threat from Champions League semifinal opponents Monaco after being held to a 2-2 Serie A draw at “similar” Atalanta on Friday.
Juve travelled to Bergamo well aware of the ensuing danger from Atalanta, who took three points from Napoli, Roma and Inter Milan at their Atleti Azzurri d’italia Stadium earlier this season. Minutes after Dani Alves thought he had snatched a valuable away win with a great, late diving header to hand Juve a 2-1 lead, Swiss midfielder Remo Freuler bundled past Gianluigi Buffon at the second attempt to snatch a deserved share of the spoils.
Juventus face Monaco in the Principality on Wednesday, and Allegri believes Leonardo Jardim’s men are “similar” to Atalanta. “A win tonight would have given us a fair boost in the championship stakes,” Allegri told Mediaset. “But now, we have to focus on Wednesday’s match. Monaco are a side that are similar to Atalanta, so we’ll have to be good.”
On Friday’s performance, the French Ligue 1 side can have cause for optimism. Gian Piero Gasperini’s men were enterprising, determined and, on two key occasions, found a way past the usually astute Juve defence to find a way past Buffon.
LEIPZIG HELD, BAYERN ON VERGE OF TITLE
Bayern Munich will be crowned Bundesliga champions for the fifth straight season by beating Wolfsburg away on Saturday after second-placed RB Leipzig were held to a goalless draw by 10-man Ingolstadt.
Leipzig’s result at their Red Bull Arena, where defender Alfredo Morales was sent off with four minutes left to play, left Bayern seven points clear with the Bavarians still having four games to play.
Leipzig, meanwhile, can only claim a maximum nine further points. A 22nd league win this season, and three more points at Wolfsburg’s Volkswagen Arena, will confirm Carlo Ancelotti’s team as champions for the 27th time.
It would be consolation for Wednesday’s 3-2 German Cup semifinal defeat at home to Borussia Dortmund which robbed Ancelotti the chance of emulating predecessor Pep Guardiola with the domestic double in his first season.
Dortmund, who face Eintracht Frankfurt in the German Cup final on May 27, hold onto third place, which would mean a direct Champions League place next season, despite their goalless draw at home to Cologne.
Juventus' forward Paulo Dybala (left) vies with Atalanta's defender Andrea Masiello during their Serie A match in Bergamo.