An early goal from Fabio Quagliarella proved to be all Juventus needed to top CD Guadalajara 1-0 in their final game of the Herbalife World Football Challenge on Thursday night at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh, N.C.
Quagliarella took advantage of a slip from defender Jonny Magallón to slot the ball past goalie Luis Ernesto Míchel in the 12th minute.
Guadalajara, who came into the match in form after a full preseason and a win in their first game of the Mexican regular season, threatened first. In the fifth minute, Marco Fabián de la Mora found the ball at the edge of the box after a series of bounces and let loose a shot that went just wide of the goal.
Although Chivas had the early initiative, it was Juventus who struck first. In the 12th minute, Quagliarella, out on the right flank, found a long ball from the midfield, but his first touch was too hard. Magallón got to the ball first, but as he tried to clear it, he slipped and ceded the sphere to the Bianconeri forward, who calmly slipped it inside the far post.
Looking to equalize, speedy Chivas forward Alberto Medina found a chipped through ball behind the defense, but goalkeeper Marco Storari came off his line quickly to thwart the advance.
In a near mirror image of the first goal, Juventus almost tallied their second had it not been for a timely save from Míchel in the 24th minute. Simone Pepe brought down a long ball from the midfield out on the right wing, outran his marker and tried to chip it over Míchel, but the goalie stopped the attempt with his face.
With play winding down in the first half, American-born Guadalajara defender Miguel Ángel Ponce unleashed a powerful shot from distance that forced Storari to a two-handed deflection.
Early in the second stanza, Cristian Pasquato tried add an insurance tally for Juventus from afar. In the 50th minute, the midfielder, who scored a spectacular goal in Juventus’ win over Club América on Tuesday, unleashed a wicked shot that swerved just wide of Míchel’s upright.
In the 56th minute, Chivas mananger José Luis Real inserted the quartet of 2011 U-17 World Cup winners — all making their professional debuts — to add a spark to his team.
Guadalajara’s best chance of the match came with 10 minutes left on the clock. Second-half substitute Jorge Mora lined up a free kick from about 36 yards out and powered his shot onto the upright and out of play.
Second-half substitute Alessandro Del Piero took his turn on a free kick in the 83rd minute, but his deflected shot off the wall was easily pushed out of bounds by the ‘keeper.
With the win, Juventus close out their WFC participation, amassing a 2-1 record in the tournament, their only loss coming against Sporting Clube de Portugal.
Guadalajara, meanwhile, have a regular season match awaiting them this weekend. They return to WFC participation on Aug. 3, when they take on Spanish giants Barcelona. (8 pm ET; ESPN2, Galavisión)
JUV -- Quagliarella, 12'
JUVENTUS -- Storari; Motta (24th 2nd half Grygera), Barzagli (43th 2nd half Sorensen), Bonucci (24th 2nd half. Chiellini), Ziegler; Pepe (12th 2nd half Krasic), Pazienza (22nd 2nd half. Marrone), Marchisio (15th 2nd half Pirlo), Pasquato (12th 2nd half. Immobile); Quagliarella (24th 2nd half Del Piero), Toni (24th 2nd half Matri)
Subs not used: Buffon, Manninger, Lichtsteiner, De Ceglie, Giandonato, De Silvestro
CD GUADALAJARA -- Michel (12th 2nd half Hernandez); De Luna (19th 2nd half Gallardo), Araujo (19th 2nd half Ledesma), Magallon (24th 2nd half José Luis), Ponce (30th 2nd half Sanchez); Mejia (24th 2nd half Mora), Esparza (30th 2nd half Nava), Arellano (12th 2nd half Salazar), Fabian (12th 2nd half Tostado); Baez (12th 2nd half Fierro), Medina (12th 2nd half Casillas)
Subs not used: Solorio