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Lech hold off Juve to gain progress

KKS Lech Poznań 1-1 Juventus
Artjoms Rudņevs was the scourge of Juve again as his goal was enough for a draw that helped the hosts progress at the expense of their visitors.

Lech did enough to hold off Juventus and clamber out of Group A
Lech did enough to hold off Juventus and clamber out of Group A ©Cyfrasport

Vincenzo Iaquinta's late equaliser was not enough to prevent KKS Lech Poznań from advancing to the UEFA Europa League knockout rounds at the expense of Juventus.

Lech struck after 12 minutes when Artjoms Rudņevs followed up his Matchday 1 hat-trick in Turin with a headed opener, and were the superior team until Iaquinta levelled with six minutes to play. Juve substitute Alberto Libertazzi missed a superb opportunity in the final minute, leaving Lech to seal a top-two finish alongside Manchester City FC in Group A.

Giorgio Chiellini scored two of Juve's three goals in the 3-3 September draw between the sides, and was again upstaged by Rudņevs in tonight's return as the striker rose above the Italy centre-back to flick in Semir Štilić's inswinging corner at the near post.

Juve took time to adapt to the wintry conditions but could have equalised in the 33rd minute when Leonardo Bonucci failed to find the net from close range after Krzysztof Kotorowski could only parry Alessandro Del Piero's driven free-kick from distance.

Although Lech were playing the more enterprising football, they needed some alert keeping from Kotorowski to go into the break ahead as he denied Iaquinta when one on one. Lech substitute Marcin Kikut was even more wasteful just after the hour, shooting over having created a clear opening by nicking the ball off Chiellini just outside the area.

He was almost made to pay as Alessandro Del Piero nodded a Miloš Krasić cross just wide when well placed at the far post. The lively Serbian international did play a part in the leveller, though, threading through for Iaquinta who turned the ball into the far corner.

Cue a frantic finale in which Libertazzi, albeit falling backwards, failed to get the power behind a header when unmarked that would have won the game for Juventus. Instead, the unbeaten Italian giants are left playing for pride in a fortnight's time when Lech will be looking to secure first place.