Cristian Pasquato celebrates his first half goal for Juventus.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
By Michael Lewis and Charlie Cuttone
QUEENS, N.Y. -- Juventus overcame a 38-minute lightning delay in the first half and Club America over 90 minutes to register a 1-0 win over the Mexican side in an international friendly at Citi Field on Tuesday night.
Forward Cristian Pasquato connected for the lone goal of the night in the 42nd minute before a crowd of 20,859.
It was the second soccer game played at the Mets' home field and the first between club teams. The Greece and Ecuador National Teams battled to a 1-1 draw on June 7.
Juventus evened its World Football Challenge record 1-1, having dropped a 2-1 decision to Sporting (Portugal) in Toronto last week.
"Losing is not in my vocabulary and I don't like losing," Juventus coach Antonio Conte said. "I am happy my players were able to execute the things that we are working on in our training.
"This is a well-advanced club we played today an important test in our preparation."
Club America ended its participation in the competition at 0-2, having lost to Manchester City (England) on July 16, 2-0.
"I thought we played a good game," Club America coach Carlos Reinoso said. "It was unfortunately stopped by the weather. It halted our rhythm."
But Reinoso felt good about the game. Club America kicked off its Apertura season in Mexico with a 2-1 win over Querétaro last weekend.
"It was good to go toe to toe with a great team like Juve," he said. "We had that touch on the ball. That's what we wanted."
Juve dominated the early action, taking shots, but not being able to put many on target.
Only five minutes into the match, Marco Motta sent a free kick that goalkeeper Armando Navarrette saved.
Juve forward Alessandro Marti endured a particularly frustrating opening half. He sent a left wing cross through the goal-mouth area, but no one was there to put the ball home in the 14th minute.
Standing about 12 yards out in the penalty area, Marti tried to volley a right-wing feed, but his shot traveled just wide right in the 26th minute.
The rain started began shortly thereafter with flashes of lightning in the distance and huge booms of thunder in the background.
Finally, referee Jorge Gonzalez had seen and heard enough and motioned both teams to leave the field to the safety of their respective locker rooms waiting for the storm to abate in the 32nd minute at 8:41 p.m.
After a 38-minute delay, the teams resumed play at 9:18 p.m.
It did not take Juve long to score as the Italian side took advantage of an error by Navarrette. Stephan Litchtsteiner fired a shot from the right side that Navarrette came out to slap away as he left the goal-mouth area. The ball went directly to Pasquato, who volleyed it home for a 1-0 Juventus advantage in the 42nd minute.
A minute into first-half stoppage time, Juve goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon denied Christian Benitez from point-blank on the left side of the penalty area.
Buffon was sharp as ever in the second half as well as he pounced on a low pass from the right flank from halftime substitute Matias Vuoso in the 65th minute.
Conte left the stadium more than content.
"The baseball diamond was a bit of rough patch but the grass cut was beautiful for soccer," he said. "It's great to play in front of Juventini fans, especially being fans from afar."