Johnson earns point for City

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Manchester City failed to reach the heights of their victory over Chelsea and had to settle for a 1-1 draw against Juventus in their Europa League group game at Eastlands.

The Italians opened the scoring through Vincenzo Iaquinta only for Adam Johnson to equalise before half-time following a glorious through-ball from Yaya Toure.

Alessandro Del Piero thought he had won the game for the visitors seven minutes from time when his free kick hit the underside of the bar. He complained to referee Eduardo Gonzalez the ball had gone over the line but play rightly continued.

City found themselves on the back foot from the start, unable to retain possession for any decent length of time.

That Iaquinta's blistering 30-yard effort in the 10th minute should take the merest flick off Kolo Toure should not detract from the magnificence of his strike. What it did do was deviate the ball off its path just enough to take it away from Joe Hart, who buried his head as the net bulged.

City shook themselves out of their lethargy just after the half-hour as Gareth Barry nudged Carlos Tevez's cross on with an inspired back header that bounced off the far post. As Juventus struggled to clear the rebound, Johnson nipped in and fired a shot towards the Juve goal which former Arsenal keeper Alex Manninger turned away with his legs.

City levelled on their next attack when Yaya Toure matched his eagle-eyed spot of Johnson's run inside with an inch-perfect slide rule pass that sent the winger clean through. Manninger tried to make himself look tall but the former Middlesbrough star kept his cool and tucked away the equaliser.

Now 35, Del Piero remains at the heart of all Juventus' attacking play. After substantial advantages in territory and possession had brought City no reward, the World Cup winner picked himself up after earning a free-kick by falling over Kolo Toure and fired agonisingly wide.

The visitors' attacks were more sporadic though as Emmanuel Adebayor, Patrick Vieira and Barry all tried their luck, without success, and Tevez buzzed around in a frenzy.

Substitute David Silva, tried to bring some fresh impetus to a City attack that had started to run out of ideas but it did not work, and if Del Piero's free-kick had been a couple of centimetres lower they would not even have ended up with a point.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Europa League
Emmanuel Adebayor
Joe Hart
David Silva
Manchester City
Carlos Tevez
Gareth Barry
Premier League
Kolo Toure
Patrick Vieira
Adam Johnson
Patrick Vieira

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