Juventus 2-0 Cagliari: Cristiano Ronaldo nets first-half double in Turin as Andrea Pirlo’s unbeaten men close the gap on top spot to one point
- Juventus moved one point behind first-placed Napoli after downing Cagliari
- Cristiano Ronaldo fired in a first-half double for the unbeaten hosts in Turin
- Andrea Pirlo believes his team dominated the affair and had ‘needed’ the clash
After a relatively quiet international break for Ronaldo, with one goal in three games for Portugal, he scored in the 38th minute in Turin, finding the net for the fifth successive league match.
Four minutes later the 35-year-old forward brilliantly struck at the far post to double his side’s advantage, taking him to eight league goals for the season, from just four starts.
Cristiano Ronaldo netted a first-half brace as Juventus beat Cagliari to edge closer to top spot
Ragnar Klavan thought he had got Cagliari back into the game in the second half but his header was ruled out for offside in the build-up.
Ronaldo turned provider on two occasions as Juventus looked to score again but poor finishing meant the hosts failed to add to their tally.
The win enabled Andrea Pirlo’s unbeaten side to close the gap to leaders AC Milan to one point, with Milan playing at Napoli on Sunday. Cagliari stayed 11th.
Ronaldo smashed home a low effort for his first goal and soon followed it up with a deft flick
The 35-year-old star’s heroics saw him find the back of the net for a fifth straight league game
‘When you come back from the international break it is always difficult, but we returned with the right spirit from the first minute,’ Pirlo said.
‘We dominated the game well, we needed a game like this.’
Cagliari showed plenty of confidence in the early stages – and Juventus looked shaky after collecting just three wins from their last seven fixtures before the international break.
Andrea Pirlo’s side remain unbeaten in the league and have moved within one point of Napoli
However, after recovering from COVID-19, then an ankle injury, before travelling to play for his country, Ronaldo looked sharper than all around him as he took charge.
The finish for his first goal was a trademark one, cutting inside twice before driving a low shot into the net, but the second was even better, adjusting as the ball was diverted behind him before flicking it home.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Atalanta were held to a 0-0 draw at Spezia and Lazio beat bottom side Crotone 2-0.