Hiddink hails Chelsea character after Juventus comeback

Chelsea boss Guus Hiddink was delighted with the fighting spirit of his players after their 2-2 draw at Juventus.

Chelsea boss Guus Hiddink was delighted with the fighting spirit of his players after their 2-2 draw at Juventus.

Chelsea, leading 1-0 from the first leg in London, were level overall when Vincenzo Iaquinta put the Italians ahead on the night in the 19th minute.

But Michael Essien, making his first start since damaging knee ligaments on international duty last September, equalised in first-half stoppage time.

Juventus went back in front in the 74th minute through an Alessandro Del Piero penalty but Didier Drogba scored his fourth goal in five games in the 83rd minute to crush any hopes of a home comeback.

"Playing at Juventus is not the easiest task," said Hiddink. "We started rather sloppily and lost too many duels.

"We did not mark well and we were 1-0 down. There was a reaction from the team that was okay.

"We knew at 1-0 down, or even at 2-0 down, that we must not panic and could score at any moment, which we did.

"We reacted after the 1-0 and scored just before half-time. In the second half, we controlled, not dominated, a little more.

"We didn't play the stupid long ball. We started playing with passes more. That was better to see."

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