January 22, 2018 / 10:29 PM / 7 months ago

Soccer: Unconvincing Juve keep up the pressure on Napoli

MILAN (Reuters) - Juventus moved back within a point of Serie A leaders Napoli with a 1-0 win at home to Genoa on Monday although it was hardly a convincing display from the defending champions.

Soccer Football - Serie A - Juventus vs Genoa - Allianz Stadium, Turin, Italy - January 22, 2018 JuventusÕ Giorgio Chiellini, Wojciech Szczesny and team mates celebrate after the match REUTERS/Massimo Pinca

Douglas Costa scored in the 16th minute, ending Genoa keeper Mattia Perin’s run of four successive clean sheets in the league, to keep his second-placed team on Napoli’s heels.

Napoli and Juve have each won their last five Serie A games, to reach 54 and 53 points respectively, with Lazio and Inter Milan now trailing the Turin side by 10 points.

Costa found Mario Mandzukic on the left and he wrong-footed the Genoa defence with a neat pass back to the Brazilian who was left unmarked to slip the ball past Perin from close range.

Genoa were penned into their half for most of the opening period although Diego Laxalt threatened with a long-range drive which fizzed over Wojciech Szczesny’s crossbar.

Juventus continued to dominate possession after halftime but could not to find the killer second goal.

Genoa grew in confidence and pushed forward near the end, causing rare panic in the Juve area before Giorgio Chiellini cleared the ball, but they never looked truly threatening.

Soccer Football - Serie A - Juventus vs Genoa - Allianz Stadium, Turin, Italy - January 22, 2018 Juventus’ Douglas Costa scores their first goal REUTERS/Massimo Pinca

Writing by Brian Homewood; editing by Ken Ferris

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