Gonzalo Higuaín scored twice against his former club Napoli to book Juventus’ place in the Coppa Italia final on Wednesday evening.
The 29-year-old has been branded a traitor by Napoli supporters since completing a €90 million transfer in the summer and further endeared himself to those in the Stadio San Paolo with two goals to complete a 5-4 aggregate victory.
Leading 3-1 from the first leg, Higuaín rifled in from distance to give Juve the lead and despite Marek Hamsik equalising on the night, the Argentina number nine thumped in a second. Dries Mertens and Lorenzo Insigne pulled goals back to complete a 3-2 win on the night but Higuaín had done exactly what the Bianconeri paid all that money for him to do.
Juventus will meet Lazio in the final on 2 June at Rome’s Stadio Olimpico.
Lionel Messi produced another breathtaking display to help Barcelona blow Jorge Sampaoli’s Sevilla away at the Camp Nou after all the controversy of his international ban.
Messi had already struck the crossbar when an eight-minute spell during the first half ended the contest. The Argentina captain darted down the right before crossing for Luis Suárez to produce an outstanding bicycle kick and in a flash, Barcelona were out of sight.
Two emphatically taken goals by Messi took his season tally in LaLiga to 27 and closed Barcelona to within two points of Real Madrid at the top.
In the Premier League, Sergio Agüero’s 15th goal of the season couldn’t prevent Manchester City slumping to a 2-1 defeat away to Chelsea. Thibaut Courtois’ weak clearance fell straight to David Silva and although his initial effort was saved the Argentinean was on hand to tap in what at the time was an equaliser.
And in the Coupe de France quarter-final, Javier Pastore added a fourth in what was a routine 4-0 win for Paris Saint-Germain against Avranches. It had been an otherwise disappointing performance from El Flaco but he took his goal expertly in the 81st minute to wrap up the victory.
Giovani Lo Celso also made a second half substitute appearance, with the youngster in desperate need of minutes since his transfer from Rosario Central.