Morata nets 2 as Juventus beats Inter 3-0 in Cup semi opener
ABS-CBN Sports on Jan 28, 2016 10:49 AM
Juventus' Alvaro Morata challenges for the ball with Verona's Evangelos Moras during a Serie A soccer match between Juventus and Verona at the Juventus stadium, in Turin, Italy, Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016. (AP Photo/ Massimo Pinca)
TURIN, Italy (AP) — Alvaro Morata ended a 20-match goalscoring drought with two goals as holder Juventus beat 10-man Inter Milan 3-0 in the first leg of their Italian Cup semifinal on Wednesday.
Morata hadn't scored for nearly four months but he powerfully struck a penalty into the top left corner in the 36th minute after Juan Cuadrado had been barged over by Jeison Murillo.
The Spain forward doubled his tally shortly after the hour with a brilliant finish into the top far corner after Patrice Evra's cross had taken a fortunate bounce off an Inter defender into his path.
"It was quite a tough period, also off the pitch because of the psychological problems I had," Morata said. "My teammates helped me so much, the coach, the club, they all talked to me every day. Now I have to continue like this."
Inter's hopes of getting back into the match all but evaporated when Murillo was sent off in the 70th minute following a second booking for another foul on Cuadrado.
Paulo Dybala finished off the scoring six minutes from time, sidefooting a shot between the legs of Samir Handanovic from the edge of the area to ensure Juventus takes a clear advantage into the second leg at San Siro on March 2 or 3.
It was Dybala's 15th goal of the season.
It was also the first time Juventus has beaten Inter in the Italian Cup since 1972.
"I could have thought about losing in Turin but not 3-0, it's an exaggerated result for Juventus," Inter coach Roberto Mancini said. "The aim was to stay in the game in the first half, the penalty changed the match.
"Until the penalty, Juventus didn't create any danger, I don't remember Handanovic making a save. The second goal was our gift, the ball came to Morata from an error by (Felipe) Melo."
AC Milan edged Alessandria 1-0 in the first leg of their semifinal on Tuesday.