‘Extraordinary’ Cristiano Ronaldo Helps Juventus Stretch Perfect Start With Napoli Win

‘Extraordinary’ Cristiano Ronaldo Helps Juventus Stretch Perfect Start With Napoli Win
  • 1


Mario Mandzukic scored in each half as Juventus came from behind to beat ten-man Napoli 3-1 and open up a six-point lead on Carlo Ancelotti’s side at the top of the Serie A table. Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo played a role in all three goals as Massimiliano Allegri’s side ensured a maximum 21 points after seven games. Napoli are on 15 points, after falling to their second defeat of the season.
“Ronaldo is enjoying his football, he has integrated very well,” said Allegri.
“He’s an extraordinary player, the passing is exceptional, and tonight was the best Ronaldo of the season, along with the high-level half-hour in Valencia.”In Turin, Ancelotti’s first trip to his former club got off to a promising start when Jose Callejon volleyed for Dries Mertens to open the scoring after ten minutes.
But Ronaldo set up Mandzukic to head in the equaliser after 26 minutes.The momentum then swung to Juventus with a Ronaldo effort ricocheting off the post and into the path of the onrushing Croat who tapped in four minutes after the break.
Napoli were struggling after Portuguese left-back Mario Rui was sent off on 58 minutes for a second bookable offence.
Ronaldo headed towards goal after a corner with centre-back Leonardo Bonucci sliding in the third on 76 minutes.
“I think the referee made a superficial decision. Mario Rui got the second yellow card after a good long wait to consider it,” said Ancelotti.
“I was angry at my team because we started strong and took the lead, but then started getting sluggish and allowed Juventus to regain their confidence.”
Both teams are in Champions League action next week with Juventus hosting Swiss club Young Boys without Ronaldo, who has a one-match ban after he was controversially sent off in the win over Valencia.
Napoli play at home against last year’s runners-up Liverpool.
Earlier Lorenzo Pellegrini came off the bench and lifted Roma to a 3-1 win over bitter city rivals Lazio to revive his side’s stumbling start to the season.
Eusebio Di Francesco’s team had plunged into crisis after a 2-0 defeat to Bologna, but have now claimed consecutive wins for the first time this season after their 4-0 victory over Frosinone in midweek.