Juve crash to Catania
Juventus crashed to their third consecutive defeat to leave coach Ciro Ferrara under severe pressure after a 2-1 loss at home to Catania.
The Sicilians picked up their first win over Juventus in more than 45 years thanks to a penalty from Jorge Martinez midway through the first half and a winner from Mariano Izco three minutes from time. Hasan Salihamidzic had given Juve some hope in the 66th minute, but it was not enough to prevent another defeat for the Bianconeri.
With temperatures below freezing, the reception the Juve team received from their own fans was equally frosty. The team bus was confronted by angry fans who threw eggs and fireworks at the team as they arrived at the Stadio Olimpico. The hardcore fans behind one of the goals turned their backs on the team at the start of the game, missing the first chance which fell to Catania's Takayuki Morimoto.
Nicola Legrottaglie managed to get back to make a telling intervention as the Japanese striker prepared to shoot from just inside the area with only Juve goalkeeper Alex Manninger to beat. Juve were struggling to settle and the tension on the terraces was accentuated by every misplaced pass.
Tiago then inexplicably gave away a penalty by almost ripping the shirt off Nicolas Spolli's back as they both contended room inside the penalty area. Martinez scored from the spot but was ordered to re-take it as the referee had not blown his whistle, but the Uruguayan showed enough composure to send Manninger the wrong way for a second time.
Felipe Melo has been made a scapegoat by the Juve fans for their side's recent woes and he was met by a chorus of disapproval when Ferrara decided he had seen enough of the Brazilian midfielder after just over half an hour. The time had come for Salihamidzic to make his return after missing much of the season due to injury, and he was warmly welcomed onto the field.
Diego's poor form has been synonymous with I Bianconeri's decline and he received ironic cheers from the home fans when he placed a shot over the crossbar from level with the penalty spot in the 53rd minute. Juve then equalised with a goal made in the Bundesliga. Former Werder Bremen forward Diego lifted the ball into the penalty area where former Bayern Munich defender Salihamidzic had found space to control the ball, turn, and place it past Mariano Andujar.
The home side grew in confidence and started to look for a winner with Andujar making a reflex save to deny David Trezeguet in the 75th minute. However, it was Catania who hit them on the break in the 87th minute with Izco racing through to score his first goal in Serie A and earn the Sicilians their first win over Juventus since 1963.