Juventus: Miralem Pjanic (45″), Cristiano Ronaldo (78″)
SPAL: No score
Cristiano Ronaldo returned from injury with a goal at end of second half, as current Serie A champions maintained their second spot in the table this season by beating SPAL 2-0.
Miralem Pjanic’s strike put the hosts in front on the stroke of half-time before Ronaldo, who missed Tuesday’s win over Brescia with a minor injury, headed his third goal of the campaign with 12 minutes remaining from a cross from left flank by Paulo Dybala.
Dybala featured in starting eleven in last three matches of 2019-20 Serie A season and got first full match today. He seemed to have complimented well to rest of Juventus attacking. Argentine attacher is a player who can operate near central line and impresses during counter attack with his speed, control and dribbling prowess. It seems, the 25-year-old has been slowly going about his business for Maurizio Sarri.
Earlier the arrival of Cristaino Ronaldo in the summer of 2018, reduced Dybala to a part-timer in the squad. During the course of the recent transfer window, there were serious negotiations with numerous clubs showing interests in the play-maker. Against SPAL, Dybala was deployed as the focal point of attack alongside Ronaldo in a 4-3-1-2 formation, and the former Palermo man shone like a million stars.
SPAL keeper Etrit Berisha made stunning saves to keep out close-range headers from Aaron Ramsey and Sami Khedira, to utter dismay of both the players. Ronaldo had six attempts at goal with five on target, but all were stopped by Berisha, except one.
Meanwhile, legendary goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, 41, played his 903rd career game, a record for an Italian player, surpassing former AC Milan defender Paolo Maldini.
Juve are second in the table on 16 points, two behind leaders Inter Milan. With today’s defeat, the visitors fell to their fifth defeat in six matches to stay level on three points with Sampdoria at the bottom of the table. Juventus and Inter will go head-to-head at San Siro, Milan next Sunday in a match, which has potential to change course of the Serie A proceeding this season.
— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) September 28, 2019
— SPAL (@spalferrara) September 28, 2019
Head to Head
Juve coach Maurizio Sarri said he was taking things one step at a time with a Champions League clash against Bayer Leverkusen to come on Tuesday first. “I haven’t actually watched any Inter games this season, as we’ve focused mainly on the teams we are facing next,” he told Sky Sport Italia.
“Tonight, we’ll watch a couple of Bayer Leverkusen matches and then go to dinner. I hear that Inter are playing very well; I had no doubt they would considering the quality of the coach and their players. I always said this would be a far more balanced season.”