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Madrid: Atletico Madrid bounced back from its inconsistent recent performances to beat Serie A powerhouse Juventus 2-0 in round-of-16 action in the Champions League here.

The home team had many more scoring chances during this first-leg match-up at Wanda Metropolitano Stadium on Wednesday night, reports Efe news.
 
But the opening goal proved elusive due in part to a pair of controversial decisions by the video assistant referee (VAR) system, which made its much-awaited debut at Europe’s premier club football competition at the round-of-16 stage.

Playing his second game since returning from an injury absence of more than two months, striker Diego Costa won nearly every battle for the ball on the ground and in the air early on and also appeared to have earned a penalty when he was brought down by defender Mattia De Sciglio at the edge of the area at around the half-hour mark.

VAR overturned the call on the field, however, ruling that the contact occurred just outside the penalty box.

Antoine Griezmann had a chance on the ensuing close-range free kick, but Juve goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny was able to clear it away for a corner.

Earlier, Atletico superstar net minder Jan Oblak had made his presence felt with a remarkable save of a Cristiano Ronaldo free kick in the ninth minute.

Shortly after the intermission, Atletico saw a couple of golden chances go by the wayside.

First, Costa badly botched a shot after receiving a sublime through ball from Griezmann in the 50th minute; just a few minutes later, the French superstar appeared to score on a delicately struck chip shot, but Szczesny got just enough of his finger on the ball to send it off the crossbar.

Atletico’s frustrations then continued to mount, thanks to a second unfavourable VAR ruling.




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