TURIN, Italy (AP) — Gianluigi Buffon could not bring himself to watch.
Carlos Tevez was behind the ball, ready to take a penalty kick that could put Juventus back ahead of defending champion Real Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League semifinal. Buffon, the Juventus goalkeeper and an Italian national team star, stood in his goal with his back to the action.
“I’ve been doing that since the 2006 World Cup final,” he said. “I just focused on a single fan and when he got up, I knew we’d scored!”
Tevez sent the ball straight down the middle to beat Iker Casillas, and Juventus won 2-1 Tuesday night in the opener of the home-and-home, total-goals series.
Alvaro Morata scored against his old team in the ninth minute to put Juventus ahead. Cristiano Ronaldo got his 54th goal of the season for Madrid, which will attempt to overturn the deficit when it hosts the second leg on May 13.
Barcelona is home against Bayern Munich on Wednesday in the other semifinal.
“We’ve shown we’re here and we want this final, we’ll fight for it until the end,” Juventus midfielder Andrea Pirlo said. “We have to have the same conviction and determination at Madrid.”
Acquired by Juventus last July after helping Madrid win a record 10th European title, Morata didn’t celebrate after scoring the opening goal. Claudio Marchisio slotted the ball through to Carlos Tevez, whose shot deflected off a hand of Casillas into the path of Morata.
Morata tapped the ball in from close range, Juventus’ fourth shot on target.
Ronaldo tied the score in the 27th minute with his record 76th Champions League goal, one more than Barcelona’s Lionel Messi. Ronaldo had an empty net in front of him after Buffon was unable to get to James Rodriguez’s cross.
Tevez, Ronaldo’s former teammate on Manchester United, put the hosts back ahead in the 58th minute after he was fouled by Dani Carvajal. Tevez, who had run almost the entire length of the field before he was brought down, scored his 29th goal this season.
Juventus last reached the final in 2003 and has not won the title since 1996. Madrid is trying to become the first team to win two in a row since AC Milan in 1989 and ’90.
“We played well at times. We had good opportunities. We have to do the same in the return leg,” said Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti, who led Juventus from 1999-2001. “We have confidence because we are playing at home, and the fans there will help us. We have to be patient. The result is a negative one, but not such a bad one.”
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