Dybala penalty double puts Juve in control

Paolo Dybala's two second-half penalties gave Coppa Italia holders Juventus a 3-1 semi-final first leg lead over Napoli on Tuesday.

Napoli had taken the lead on 36 minutes through Jose Callejon against a lacklustre Juve, the Spaniard firing home after good work by Lorenzo Insigne, but the Serie A leaders bounced back after the break.

Dybala scored from the spot on 47 and 69 minutes, following fouls by Kalidou Koulibaly and Pepe Reina, while Argentine hitman Gonzalo Higuain scored on 64 minutes against his old club to give Juve their 10th consecutive win in all competitions.

Juventus now hold a two-goal advantage ahead of the second leg at the Stadio San Paolo in Naples on April 5.

Speaking after the match, Juve coach Massimiliano Allegri complimented his side on their fighting spirit.

“The first half was bad on a technical level, the second was much better. I don’t think we played badly with three at the back, we must made too many mistakes in our passing, but it went very well after the break.

“Tonight I have to compliment the entire squad, as they played a fine second half and managed to come back despite going a goal down.

Although he refused to comment on the penalty decisions, after suggestions the second penalty shouldn’t have been given.

“I don’t want to give any verdict on referees. From the pitch they both looked like penalties, then I don’t know. I think the Juventus performance cannot be reduced to just penalties. We must look beyond these things.”

Lazio and AS Roma play in the other semi-final, the first leg of the derby clash taking place on Wednesday.