AC Milan vs. Juventus: Final score 0-2, Milan impress but Juve take the points

Claudio Villa

AC Milan delivered one of their best performances of the season at home to Juventus, but the league leaders still ran out 2-0 winners.

Juventus extended their lead at the top of the Serie A table with a 2-0 win away to AC Milan on Sunday. Fernando Llorente opened the scoring on the stroke of halftime before Carlos Tévez added a spectacular second midway through the second half, though in truth, the scoreline doesn't come close to telling the true story of the match.

In fact, mid-table Milan almost completely dominated from the first whistle, pressing high up the field and forcing many lesser-spotted mistakes from Antonio Conte's team. They created -- and squandered -- several great opportunities to take the lead early in the first half, with the best seeing Kaká denied by Gianluigi Buffon in the box, before the Brazilian's rebound was cleared off the line by Leonardo Bonucci.

Riccardo Montolivo also forced a save from Buffon with a dipping volley from the edge of the area, before Andrea Poli skied his close-range rebound after the Juve keeper had parried Kaká's curler into his path. It was quite possibly Milan's best half of football of the entire season, but their failure to convert chances cost them dearly when Llorente tapped in Stephan Lichtsteiner's square pass on the stroke of halftime.

Nevertheless, their spirits weren't too severely dampened by going a goal behind, and the rossoneri came out for the restart with a similar zest. Poli went close to leveling the scoring with a header inside the box, though his effort, like Montolivo's free-kick a few moments later, flashed past Buffon's post. Juve looked uncharacteristically uncomfortable, but still no equalizer was forthcoming.

The suckerpunch was delivered midway into the second half, when Milan made a rare defensive lapse and gifted Tévez too much room on the edge of the box. The Argentine took full advantage, smashing the ball off the underside of Christian Abbiati's crossbar and into the back of the net. They say the mark of a great team is winning games while playing badly, and Juventus certainly fulfilled the criteria on a rare off day.

The bianconeri are now 11 points clear at the top of the table, and cruising to a third consecutive scudetto. Milan, meanwhile, are now below Lazio into 10th place, but there are at least some signs they're finally heading in the right direction.

AC Milan: Abbiati; Emanuelson, Bonera, Rami, Abate; De Jong, Montolivo; Kaká (Honda 71'), Poli (Saponara 53'), Taarabt (Robinho 75'); Pazzini.

Juventus: Buffon; Cáceres, Bonucci, Barzagli; Asamoah, Pogba, Pirlo, Marchisio, Lichtsteiner (Padoin 84'); Tévez (Giovinco 90+2'), Llorente (Osvaldo 90').

Goals: Llorente (44'), Tévez (68').

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