The 60,000 fans that packed out Torino’s Stadio Delle Alpi were not made to wait long for the game to kick into life. After a cagey first nine minutes disaster struck for the home side when the ball found itself at the feet of Pavel Nedved, courtesy of some terrible play by Torino’s midfield. Nedved coolly slipped the ball into Alessandro Del Piero who hammered it past the keeper.
The home fans despair turned into to abject despondency three minutes later with a second goal coming from a far less likely source. In the melee caused by Torino’s inability to deal with a tame Juventus free-kick from the left, a very arguably offside Igor Tudor managed to bundle the ball home. Referee Gennaro Borriello had no qualms in awarding it despite vehement protests from Torino’s keeper Luca Bucci and his defenders.
Ten minutes later it would be three as Torino crumbled. Nedved again was the creator. Having found space down the left wing, he carried the ball to the corner of the box before playing a beautifully weighted pass that evaded the outstretched boot of two Torino defenders to once again find Del Piero who couldn’t miss.
Mercifully for Torino the halftime whistle blew and they were able to shuffle off the pitch for 15 minutes of respite from the crowd, who by this time were close to mutiny.
Whether it was a desire to appease the fans or a particularly inspiring half time team talk from manager, Giancarlo Camolese, Torino came out for the second half looking like a different kind of beast.