Ronaldo edges back ahead of Messi to keep Juve’s top-4 hopes alive


Cristiano Ronaldo edges back ahead of Messi to keep Juve’s top-4 hopes alive at the death

 

Juventus had star man Cristiano Ronaldo to thank this evening, after leaving it late to get the better of Udinese.

CR7 at the double

Andrea Pirlo’s men were back in action a short time ago, in a Serie A showdown at the Stadio Friuli.

The Bianconeri, after officially conceding their crown to Inter Milan earlier today, headed into proceedings aware that nothing but a 3-point haul would suffice, in a bid to keep their top-4 hopes alive.

Ahead of kick-off, Juve sat outside the Champions League spots, but hopeful of taking advantage of rare recent slip-ups on the part of both Atalanta and Napoli.

And, when all was said and done, take advantage is precisely what the Old Lady managed.

An altogether uninspired display saw the visitors fall behind inside ten minutes, when a quick free-kick saw Nahuel Molina slipped in down the right to fire low past Wojciech Szczęsny.

And this was how things remained until the 83rd-minute, when Pirlo and co. were afforded a lifeline.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s free-kick from the edge of the area was needlessly handled by Rodrigo De Paul, handing Juve a penalty, which Ronaldo stepped up to slot home in confident fashion.

Then, with just minutes remaining, the Portuguese superstar was back at it again, nodding home Adrien Rabiot’s pinpoint delivery to make sure of all 3 points, whilst potentially saving his manager’s job.

Messi contest

Ronaldo’s latest brace, though, did not only prove significant in guiding Juventus back up to 3rd in the Serie A table.

It also saw the 36-year-old retake the lead in a hotly-contested goalscoring battle with long-time rival Lionel Messi.

His latest pair of goals this evening guided CR7 to 27 in the Italian top-flight, one more than Barcelona talisman Messi has managed in La Liga to this point in the campaign.

 

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This article was edited by
Josh Barker.





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