Juventus, Lazio advance to Italian Cup quarterfinals
MILAN (AP) — Defending champion Juventus reached the quarterfinals of the Italian Cup by beating Sampdoria 4-1 on Tuesday to keep alive at least one chance of winning silverware this season.
Juan Cuadrado, Daniele Rugani, Paulo Dybala and Álvaro Morata scored in a dominant performance by Juventus, which will face either Sassuolo or Cagliari in the next round. Andrea Conti had briefly gotten Sampdoria back into the match.
Lazio is also through to the final eight but needed extra time to beat Udinese 1-0.
“We are happy with the victory and to have scored many goals,” Cuadrado said. “It is important for our forwards to score, it is something that gives us confidence to face what will happen from now on. We will have very difficult challenges, but we are finding the right path.”
Fifth in Serie A — nine points behind leader Inter Milan, having played a match more — the Italian Cup might be the only competition that Juventus has a legitimate chance at winning this season.
Relegation-threatened Sampdoria fired coach Roberto D’Aversa. Youth squad coach Felice Tufano was in charge for the match in Turin.
Juventus dominated from the start and could have been more than 1-0 up at halftime.
The Bianconeri took the lead in the 25th minute when Cuadrado’s low free kick took a slight deflection and squirmed into the far bottom corner past Wladimiro Falcone’s outstretched glove.
Juventus thought it had doubled its lead less than a minute later through Morata after a one-two with Cuadrado. But the referee went to review it on the pitchside monitor and disallowed it for a foul in the build-up.
Falcone pulled off a number of saves to keep an aggressive Juventus at bay but the home side finally doubled its lead seven minutes into the second half when Arthur whipped in a cross for a towering Rugani header into the bottom left corner.
Juventus appeared to be cruising into the quarterfinals but Sampdoria got back into the match in the 63rd as Tommaso Augello’s cross from the left bypassed everyone and came to Conti, who allowed it to bounce before firing into the far bottom corner.
However, Dybala all but sealed the match three minutes later after a weak pass from Falcone was intercepted by Manuel Locatelli, who laid it off for his teammate to drill home.
Morata also got on the scoresheet, from the penalty spot, after Augello fouled Marley Aké, who had come on moments earlier for his senior team debut.
OFF THE BENCH
Substitute Ciro Immobile scored in the 106th minute to help send Lazio through to a quarterfinal against AC Milan. The Rossoneri beat Genoa last week.
Both Lazio and Udinese had several chances in the opening 90 minutes in Rome, with the home team having the best opportunity three minutes before the end of normal time.
Udinese goalkeeper Marco Silvestri parried a shot from Sergej Milinković-Savić and then defender Destiny Udogie blocked Raúl Moro’s effort on the follow-up.
Udinese went close to breaking the deadlock early in extra time when Tolgay Arslan’s strike was deflected onto the woodwork but it was Immobile who eventually made the difference.
The Italy forward — who had been brought on in the 71st minute — ran onto a long ball over the top from fellow substitute Danilo Cataldi and chipped it over Silvestri.
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