Cristiano Ronaldo is up and running for Juventus. He ended his 320 minute wait for his first Serie A goals by scoring a brace against Sassuolo.
Juventus have won their first three games and led Serie A with nine points heading into Sunday’s match against Sassuolo. But Ronaldo, five-times World Player of the Year, had yet to hit the back of the net since his move from Real Madrid in July. The Portuguese superstar secured a €100 million (£89m/$116m) move to Turin over the summer. He opted to bring his nine-year stint with Real Madrid to an end.
Ronaldo finally found the back of the net in his 4th Seria A outing. A Sassuolo defender headed the ball against his own post. And the rebound left the Portugal forward with an empty net to open his account for the Old Lady. His effort from close range was his 28th shot on goal since joining Juventus. And it opened the floodgates.
Just over 10 minutes after scoring his first goal for Juventus, Ronaldo scored his second. His opener was a little scruffy. But the five-times Ballon d’Or winner looked more like his usual self when hitting the net again. But Ronaldo missed two easy chances, by his standard, to deny himself a hattrick.
There was late drama as Khouma Babacar pulled a goal back for Sassuolo. Douglas Costa was also sent off. He spitted and elbowed a Sassuolo player. He is likely to be punished further. But Juventus held on for a 2-1 win.
The goals will come as a relief to Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri. He had stuck his neck out ahead of the match and predicted that Ronaldo would find the net against Sassuolo.
Cristiano Ronaldo found his form back just before the match against Valencia in the UCL. It is a relief for Juventus, but a nightmare for their opponents as the UCL has always been about Ronaldo in the last few years.