Joao Cancelo outshines Cristiano Ronaldo in Juventus win over Lazio

Matt Jones - Editor 22:30 25/08/2018
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Juventus sauntered to an ultimately comfortable 2-0 victory over lacklustre Lazio in Turin to make it two wins from two at the start of the 2018/19 Serie A season.

Bosnian midfielder Miralem Pjanic put the Bianconeri in the lead with terrific technique as his arrowed shot pierced the Lazio net midway through the first half after the visitors failed to clear a cross.

Cristiano Ronaldo endured another frustrating outing as he failed to exert his authority on proceedings, though he did end up with an assist as his miscued backheel – when attempting to tap in – ended up allowing Mario Mandzukic to make it 2-0 and the points safe.

Here we rate both sets of players:

JUVENTUS (4-3-3)

Wojciech Szczesny – 6: Reacted brilliantly to tip Lulic’s fierce effort around the post. Alert to cut off Immobile before the break. Did what he did well.

Joao Cancelo – 8: Always a willing forward runner down Juve’s right. A constant menace and his dangerous cross led to the killer second. Easily Juve’s best player.       

Leonardo Bonucci – 6: Was in the wars a bit as he cut out a Lazio effort, soldiering on and dealing comfortably with the visitors’ attacking threat.

Giorgio Chiellini – 6: Typically stout at the back for Juve. Saw a second-half header tipped over. Will have harder days.

Alex Sandro – 5: Uncharacteristically quiet going forward and conceded a team-high three fouls during a muted performance.

Sami Khedira – 6: Suicidal pass could have gifted Lazio the opening goal. Unlucky to later hit the post.

Miralem Pjanic – 7: Sublime technique and precision shot to give his side the lead. A Rolls Royce of a player.

Blaise Matuidi – 6: Neat and tidy as you’d expect. Wasn’t a premium performance from the all-action Frenchman, but didn’t need to be.

Federico Bernardeschi – 7: Superb work ethic to keep ball in and then sublime skill to fashion a swerving shot on goal. Always threatening, surprisingly taken off on the hour mark.        

Mario Mandzukic – 6: Strange perhaps that he led the line rather than Ronaldo. Typically hard-working and industrious if unspectacular. Opportunistic goal.

Cristiano Ronaldo – 6: A largely morose outing from the phenom. Struggled to make an impact yet his fizzing effort was saved superbly by Strakosha before he somehow earned an assist for Mandzukic’s goal.

SUBS:

Douglas Costa – 6: Fired in four crosses (second most behind Cancelo’s seven) as he looked to get involved when coming on.

Emre Can – 6: An understated debut in Bianconeri black and white. Looked calm and assured in this cameo.

Rodrigo Bentancur – 6: Thrown on late on, with little time to make an impact.

Sergej Milinkovic-Savic endured a frustrating afternoon.

Sergej Milinkovic-Savic endured a frustrating afternoon.

LAZIO (3-5-1-1)

Thomas Strakosha – 8: Brilliantly tipped Bernardeschi’s effort behind and then got fingertips to Ronaldo’s ferocious effort. Kept the scoreline respectable.

Wallace – 7: A busy afternoon for the young Brazilian. A mammoth 12 interceptions was mightily impressive.

Francesco Acerbi – 7: Horror back pass almost let Ronaldo in. Made a team-leading nine clearances.  

Stefan Radu – 5: Didn’t do a lot wrong, but not a lot right either as he was under par for the away side.

Adam Marusic – 6: Worked hard in the right wing-back role, posting a team-leading 93.6 per cent pass accuracy. 

Marco Parolo – 6: Should have done better when he had a free header from 12 yards on the stroke of half-time. Two key passes led Lazio as did his three tackles (jointly).

Lucas Leiva – 6: Aging legs had their work cut out in midfield but he contributed well with three tackles and two interceptions.

Sergej Milinkovic-Savic – 3: Tried to get his team going but toiled in the middle. Frustrating afternoon was bookended by a booking for a foul on Chiellini and his hooking 12 minutes from time.

Senad Lulic – 5: Savage early strike was well saved, after that struggled and offered little. Sliced clearance resulting in a corner summed up his frustrations.

Luis Alberto – 4: A bright spark early on as he and Milinkovic-Savic looked to impose themselves. Four crosses but faded after the break. Taken off just after the hour.

Ciro Immobile – 3: Often frustrated as he foraged in isolation up front. Only had one shot and his woeful pass accuracy was joint second worst among teammates.

SUBS:

Joaquin Correa – 6: Was busy after coming on, keeping possession well and embarking on two dribbles.

Milan Badelj – 6: Kept the ball well but wasn’t able to penetrate an increasingly fortified Juve defence.

Riza Durmisi N/A: Came on to alter the course of the game but offered precious little.

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