Cristiano Ronaldo scored once to help Juventus to a 2-0 win over Napoli in the Italian Super Cup on Wednesday night.
Ronaldo’s goal in the 64th minute ensured he surpassed Josef Bican’s record of 759 goals in official matches for club and country and in the process also won his 31st title with club and country.
Juventus, reeling from their lacklustre display against Inter Milan at the weekend, could recall Juan Cuadrado at right-back after a bout of COVID-19, and the Colombian was very bright to start the match.
But the first real goal attempt was by Napoli, though Hirving Lozano after half an hour of action, but Wojciech Szczesny saved his point-blank header on the line.
Juventus had more of the ball, but Napoli defended deep and maturely as both teams went into the break on level terms.
Juventus continued to apply more pressure in the second half, with Ronaldo popping up across Napoli’s final third. First, in the 55th minute, he got between David Ospina and Kostas Manolas and tried to prod the ball home, but in the process both Ronaldo and Ospina got winded.
He would finally make the breakthrough-even though it was tough. Napoli did not properly clear a corner kick by Federico Bernardeschi in the 63rd minute and bounced off Tiemoue Bakayoko into Ronaldo’s path, and though he was in an offside position, the deflection off a Napoli player ensured that his goal stood.
Napoli had the chance to equalise from the penalty spot in the 80th minute when Weston McKennie fouled Dries Mertens, but Lorenzo Insigne put it wide even though Szczesny dived the other way.
Juventus scored their second five minutes of added time on a breakaway through Cuadrado, who then laid it on a plate for Alvaro Morata.
Ronaldo took to Twitter to celebrate the victory, writing, “Very happy with my 4th title in Italy… We are back! This is the Juve we love, this is the team we trust and this is the spirit that will lead to the wins we want! Well done, guys! Fino Alla Fine!”
Very happy with my 4th title in Italy… We are back! This is the Juve we love, this is the team we trust and this is the spirit that will lead to the wins we want! Well done, guys! Fino Alla Fine! 🏆🏳️🏴💪🏽 pic.twitter.com/NoU2ux39gW
— Cristiano Ronaldo (@Cristiano) January 20, 2021
Juventus will now try to make up for the 10-point deficit [with a game in hand] between them and AC Milan, who led Serie A with 43 points from 18 matches.
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