Giorgio Chiellini praised his team-mates for a ‘fantastic’ performance on Wednesday that saw Juventus defeat Monaco 2-0 in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League semi-final tie.
Gonzalo Higuian scored both goals in the victory in Monaco. But equally impressive was the performance of Chiellini, the Juventus defence and goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, who combined to keep the high-powered Monaco attack scoreless.
And Chiellini acknowledged that such a strong result away from home puts Juventus in prime position to make the Champions League final.
"2-0 away for us is a very important result,” Chiellini told RTE after the game.
“Surely we can do a strong performance. We can play better in the defence when we have the ball, but before the match, [2-0] is a dream.
“We know that our run to Cardiff is improving, it's nearer day-by-day.
"We have played fantastic today. We worked together well. When we don't have the ball, we work together. When we don't have the ball, Higuaín, Dybala, Alves are amazing players, and today they made a difference.”
Chiellini also praised the decision of Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri to add veteran defender Andrea Barzagli to the lineup after Juan Cuadrado was unable to make the start due to a muscle injury.
The likes of Radamel Falcao and Kylian Mbappe, who helped Monaco deliver six goals in both of their Champions League knockout stage ties, were held in check and Chiellini credited Barzagli’s addition as a big reason for that.
"Surely with him [Barzagli] there we are stronger," said the Italy international.
"Andrea can help us challenge their fantastic forwards, Mbappe, Falcao, Lemar and Bernardo Silva. We need all the defensive players to challenge them."
The second leg of the semi-final will take place Tuesday, May 9 in Turin.