Juventus were held to a goalless draw by Austrian outfit Red Bull Salzburg in Turin tonight. The result - their fourth consecutive draw in the UEFA Europa League - will be of little comfort for Juventus coach Luigi Del Neri, whose side have yet to record a win in their European campaign.
The Italians were the better team in the first half but were denied by some fine saves from Gerhard Tremmel. The Austrians, who sit at the bottom of Group A, showed more determination after the re-start but failed to make the most of their chances.
Both teams headed into the encounter at the Stadio Olimpico searching for their first win in the competition. Juventus currently sit in third place in Group A, three points behind joint leaders Manchester City and Lech Poznan with two games remaining. Lech Poznan beat City 3-1 in the other group game tonight.
The hosts enjoyed a strong start and Alessandro Del Piero was first to test Tremmel with his effort from outside the area. The Salzburg goalkeeper dived to his right to clear the danger. Midway through the first half, Gonzalo Zarate fed Nikola Pokrivac and his 20-yard strike was met by a fine save from Juventus goalkeeper Marco Storari.
Nicola Legrottaglie should have put Juventus in front on the half-hour mark but his powerful header from a corner-kick went off target. Juventus missed another good chance to take the lead before half-time when Milos Krasic served Del Piero and he fired over the bar from the heart of the area.
Salzburg almost broke the deadlock early in the second half. Franz Schiemer's close-range header from Jakob Jantscher's cross from the right went just wide of the far post. Shortly after, Tremmel was forced to parry away Mohammed Sissoko's bullet strike from 30 yards. The visitors pressed forward more aggressively and should have been rewarded after the hour mark.
Roman Wallner nodded wide from Christian Schwegler's dangerous cross. With 10 minutes remaining, Del Piero's right-footed strike from 15 yards forced Tremmel to fully stretch to clear in what was Juve's last chance of the encounter.