The A-League All Stars warmed up for Sunday’s glamour showdown with Juventus playing out a 0-0 draw with the Young Socceroos on Tuesday night.
In front almost 7000 fans at WIN Stadium in Wollongong, neither side was able to find a breakthrough despite some close calls at both ends.
Italian legend Alessandro Del Piero drew the biggest cheer of the night when he came on to play the final 24 minutes.
In his first game in Australian since leaving Sydney FC in April, Del Piero provided a couple of memorable moments and almost pinched victory in the dying moments.
Given too much space on the edge of the box, the 39-year-old unleashed a thunderous shot which flew inches wide of the post.
The All Stars did have the ball in the net 20 minutes from time, when Michael Thwaite volleyed home from a corner, only for referee Strebre Delovski to cancel it out for a foul.
On a balmy evening, the All Stars made most of the early running without managing a clean strike on Jordan Thurtell’s goal.
But when the Young Socceroos ‘keeper was called into action midway through the half he produced sublime triple-save to deny Marcelo Carrusca, Bernie Ibini and Besart Berisha all in the space of a few seconds.
Paul Okon’s side had moments of their own in a cagey first half and probably should have been in front 10 minutes before the break.
Daniel De Silva’s defence-splitting pass left Jaushua Sotirio one-on-one with Eugene Galekovic but his powerful shot flew inches over the bar.
Foxtel A-League All Stars boss Josep Gombau made seven changes at the break and it was one of those who ensured the scores stayed level, Mark Birighitti getting down low to deny Sotirio again.
Del Piero entered the fray soon after and immediately had an impact, setting up Youssouf Hersi for a shot which was parried away by Thurtell.
Young Socceroos substitute Chris Naumoff and Del Piero both went close late on but the goal never came, with the All Stars forced to settle for a draw ahead of facing the mighty Juve in five days’ time.
The All Stars will line-up against the Serie A champions at ANZ Stadium on Sunday.
— Hyundai A-League (@ALeague) August 5, 2014