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Juventus win Coppa Italia final with early Vlahovic strike

ROME :Juventus beat Atalanta 1-0 to win a record-extending 15th Coppa Italia on Wednesday as an early strike by Dusan Vlahovic earned Massimiliano Allegri's side their first trophy in three years.

Juve, who hold both the record for most Italian Cup finals played (22) and won (15), had not lifted any silverware since they won the competition in 2020-21, when they also beat Atalanta in the final.

Allegri, meanwhile, became the first coach to win the Coppa Italia five times after Sven-Goran Eriksson and Roberto Mancini lifted the trophy on four occasions.

Vlahovic put Juventus in front in the fourth minute when he latched onto a pass from Andrea Cambiaso and broke inside the box to send the ball past goalkeeper Marco Carnesecchi from around the penalty spot.

Vlahovic, who also found the net when they lost the final to Inter Milan in 2022 (4-2), became the third Juve player to score in two Coppa Italia finals after John Charles (1958-59, 1959-60) and Savino Bellini (1937-38, 1941-42).

The Serbia striker thought he doubled the lead in the 72nd minute, nodding home a lofted Cambiaso cross after the ball bounced in front of Carnesecchi and went into the net, but the goal was disallowed for an offside.

Juve quickly switched to defending their lead, creating chances on the counter attack, while preventing Atalanta from registering a single shot on target in the entire game.

Gian Piero Gasperini's side had more possession throughout the match but an effort from outside the box by striker Ademola Lookman that hit the post in the 80th minute turned out to be their best chance.

Atalanta, who next Wednesday face Bayer Leverkusen in the Europa League final, have reached two different finals for the first time in a single season.

It was

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