Substitute Igor Tudor's injury-time volley put Juventus FC on the verge of the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals after a classic encounter in Turin. RC Deportivo La Coruña had looked like they were ending the Italian champions' campaign half an hour from the end - but then David Trezeguet and Tudor struck to knock out the Spanish visitors.
Del Piero absent
Juventus, who lost twice to Manchester United FC while depleted by 'flu, began the game without Alessando Del Piero - the latest victim of the illness - and deployed David Trezeguet up front supported by Marco Di Vaio on the left, Pavel Nedved in the middle, and Mauro Camoranesi down the right. Deportivo made two changes to the lineup that beat FC Basel, with César Martín in defence, and Mauro Silva in midfield.
The game began with play marooned in midfield, but gradually Juventus took the initiative, and, on 12 minutes, the lead. Di Vaio's powerful shot forced Juanmi to concede a corner, which in turn led to a second flag-kick. Camoranesi's next effort from the right came to Ciro Ferrara, who rose above the Deportivo defence to powerfully head in. He nearly repeated the trick soon after, putting the ball wide and Juventus then lost their way.
Deportivo appeared nonplussed by falling behind, and by the midway point of the half had taken control, with Roy Makaay and Diego Tristán making mischief up front. Makaay almost levelled the scores after he beat the offside trap but Gianluigi Buffon somehow blocked his effort. However, eleven minutes from the break, Deportivo were back on terms after Makaay cut in on the right wing, and his low cross fell perfectly for Tristán to fire in from close range.
After hanging on until half-time, Juventus brought on Marcelo Zalayeta and Gianluca Pessotto, but that did not stop Deportivo continuing to attack following the restart. And seven minutes into the second period the visitors took the lead, Makaay turning brilliantly on the edge of the box to send a perfect curling shot past a stunned Buffon for his ninth goal of this season's competition.
Juventus were now facing a premature exit and they responded by finally increasing the tempo. Alessio Tacchinardi shot narrowly over on the hour mark, but it was Trezeguet and Edgar Davids who produced the equaliser. Davids received the ball on the edge of the box and produced a strong, blocked shot into the Deportivo box, which fell to the waiting Trezeguet, who made no mistake.
Minutes later Trezeguet hit the post with a snap shot, but gradually play became more even as both sides looked for victory. As the third minute of added time came it seemed that neither team would produce that winner, but a Juventus break saw Trezeguet flick on a cross to Tudor, whose powerful volley beat the despairing Juanmi - and Deportivo.