Mönchengladbach 1-1 Juventus
Stephan Lichtsteiner's goal on his return from heart surgery, and a fine defensive display after Hernanes's red card, earned Juve a point.
Article top media content
- Juventus end Gladbach's last-16 ambitions after resilient second-half display
- Juve play last 37 minutes with ten men after Hernanes is sent off
- Stephan Lichtsteiner finds net on return from heart surgery a month ago
- USA defender Fabian Johnson scores first UEFA Champions League goal
- Next games: Mönchengladbach v Sevilla, Juventus v Man. City (25 November)
Stephan Lichtsteiner scored on his return following heart surgery as ten-man Juventus drew with Borussia Mönchengladbach, whose hopes of qualifying for the UEFA Champions League's last 16 ended at Borussia-Park.
Roared on by their vociferious supporters, Gladbach began positively without particularly threatening Gianluigi Buffon's goal. They almost took the lead in spectacular fashion, though, when Mahmoud Dahoud's sweetly-struck shot from the edge of the area cannoned off the crossbar with Buffon rooted to the spot.
The veteran custodian was picking the ball out of his net just five minutes later. Giorgio Chiellini failed to clear a low cross into the box, allowing Raffael to pick out Fabian Johson who slid the ball into the far corner.
Having struggled to gain a foothold, Juventus started to claw their way back into this Group D contest and restored parity a minute before the interval. Paul Pogba lifted an exquisite ball over the Gladbach defence, inviting Lichtsteiner to volley into the bottom corner for his first goal in 52 European appearances.
Massimiliano Allegri's side began the second half as they ended the first, with Leonardo Bonucci and Álvaro Morata both going close with powerful headers. The visitors' hopes of completing the comeback were dealt a blow, however, when Hernanes was shown a straight red card for a late tackle on Álvaro Domínguez.
Seemingly undeterred, Juventus continued to push forward and almost went ahead when Pogba's free-kick was deflected into the side-netting by Dahoud. The Bianconeri tired, though, and Buffon was forced into a spectacular stop to prevent Lars Stindl's point-blank header finding the back of the net.
With time ticking away, the 37-year-old Buffon did brilliantly to tip Thorgan Hazard's dipping effort onto the crossbar and deny André Schubert's team the three points that would have kept alive their hopes of reaching the knockout stages. The UEFA Europa League is now their goal.
Key player: Paul Pogba
The French international's assist for Lichtsteiner's equaliser epitomised his performance at Borussia-Park. The 22-year-old was a thorn in the hosts' side throughout – even after Hernanes's dismissal – and went within a whisker of finding the bottom corner with a curling free-kick.
Lichtsteiner back with a bang
After Lichtsteiner complained of breathing difficulties against Frosinone in September, the Italian champions decided that heart surgery was the best course of action. A month later, the Swiss international enjoyed a dream return to action as he earned the Old Lady a share of the spoils with a volley that Pogba himself would have been proud of.
Schubert's Foals on the rise
They were unable to make their numerical advantage count, but Gladbach's display at Borussia-Park was further proof of their improvement under Schubert. They exit the competition with heads held high, and will be determined to finish Group D strongly against Sevilla and Manchester City.