“I think it was the first time he was HAPPY”: Andrea Pirlo reveals that Cristiano Ronaldo didn’t mind beating Inter … because the Juventus star “chased shadows” for 20 minutes
- Andrea Pirlo revealed that Cristiano Ronaldo wasn’t upset about being substituted
- Juventus boss brought Star Man off the pitch with a 20-minute lead in their 3-2 win over Inter
- The hosts were reduced to 10 and Pirlo insisted that the decision was okay
- Win kept Juventus’ hopes for the top 4 alive, but Napoli is yet to slip
Andrea Pirlo insisted that Cristiano Ronaldo was happy to be sent off in Juventus’ 3-2 win over Inter Milan.
The Portuguese star was sent off 20 minutes ahead of 10 men and a 2-1 lead as the Juventus manager desperately tried to hold onto the lead after Rodrigo Bentancur was sacked.
Despite Inter equalizing on 83 minutes, Juan Cuadrado scored a late penalty to give Pirlo’s side a pivotal victory as they struggle to secure Champions League football next season.
Andrea Pirlo insisted that Cristiano Ronaldo could be substituted for Inter Milan
The Portuguese star was sent off with 20 minutes from time as Juventus tried to keep the lead
This was Ronaldo’s 37th season opener in Serie A and the Champions League and only the third time that he was substituted. However, his manager showed after the game that the striker wasn’t upset by the decision.
“I think it was the first time he was happy to be in hiding,” Pirlo told Sky Italia.
“We were a man downstairs and he would have chased shadows. He was happy and smiling in the locker room. ‘
Before being sent off for the first time since December, Ronaldo had put his side ahead against Serie A champions Inter when he tapped the rebound home after saving his penalty.
Ronaldo scored his 29th Serie A goal of the season with the tap of a finger after his penalty was saved
Juventus eventually secured a 3-2 win, which was a big win for their Champions League hopes
That was his 29th goal of the season in Serie A and he is clearly at the top of the league’s scorers list, six ahead of Romelu Lukaku, who equalized with his own penalty for Inter.
Cuadrado scored just before the break to give Juventus the lead before a second yellow card for Bentancur ended up nervously, but Pirlo’s men eventually secured the three points.
It brings them back to fourth place, two points ahead of Napoli, but Gennaro Gattuso’s side have a game against Fiorentina on Sunday.
The old lady is relying on Gennaro Gattuso’s Napoli side to be out in the last two games
Juventus’ last game of the league season is in Bologna next weekend and they face the very real possibility of relying on Napoli to slip if they get into the top four.
Should they fail, it would be the first time since the 2011/12 season that Juventus is no longer represented in the Champions League and would put even more pressure on coach Pirlo.
Ahead of this big game against Bologna, Juventus will face Atalanta in the Coppa Italia final in the middle of the week.
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