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Allegri 'ashamed' as Juve fall in Israel


Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri said he felt "ashamed" of his side who played without "heart and passion" in a 2-0 Champions League defeat at Maccabi Haifa on Tuesday to sit on the brink of elimination.

Omer Atzili scored twice to give the Israeli side their first victory in four matches in Group H in this year's elite European competition.

Juve are third in their group, equal on three points with Maccabi, who remain bottom, and five behind Benfica and Paris Saint-Germain and who drew later in the evening.

"There is only silence after this bad result," said Allegri. "We're not talking here about technical or tactical questions, it is a question of heart and passion. We play too individually."

The 55-year-old ruled out talk of resignation.

"Resignation? Never, when a challenge becomes more difficult it's even more beautiful, you have to get out of it with courage, desire and passion."

After the game Juventus president Andrea Agnelli expressed his dismay but repeated his support for Allegri.

"I'm ashamed of what's happening right now," said Agnelli to Sky Sport Italia.

"There is no one person culpable, it's not the coach's fault if we can't win a tackle. Allegri is going to remain coach of Juventus."

Allegri agreed with the club president's verdict.

"Agnelli is right when he says we must be ashamed," said Allegri, who lead the club to two Champions League runners-up finishes in 2015 and 2017.

"Especially for the first half, where we did nothing and they put us in difficulty from the start."

The hosts dominated the first half at the Sammy Ofer stadium and took the lead after seven minutes.

Atzili outjumped the visiting defence to meet a cross from Pierre Cornud, and although he turned his head away just before making contact, the ball struck his back. Wojciech Szczesny reached the ball but it crawled through his outstretched fingers and in off the post.

Maccabi poured forward. Tjaronn Chery hit the bar. Szczesny saved from Atzili.

The home team continued to dominate after Juventus midfielder Angel di Maria limped off with a thigh problem in the 24th minute.

Three minutes before half time, Atzili shaped to curl a left-footy shot inside the far post, but instead clipped it inside the near post with Szczesny rooted to his line.

Juventus managed their first strike on goal seconds before half time but Joshua Cohen saved low from Dusan Vlahovic's header.

Juventus pressed from the start of the second half and Cohen saved high from a Daniele Rugani header flying toward the top corner.

He later saved from wingers Juan Cuadrado and Arkadiusz Milik but Maccabi created late chances as they held on comfortably.

In their third appearance in the Champions League group stage, Maccabi claimed their second big scalp 20 years after their first.

In their debut campaign they beat Manchester United 3-0 at home in October 2002. They failed to progress then or on their second appearance in 2009-10.


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