Pirlo has no problem with frustrated Ronaldo throwing Juve shirt after firing blank

By Sports Desk April 11, 2021

Andrea Pirlo had no issues with Cristiano Ronaldo throwing his shirt on the ground after failing to score in Juventus' Serie A victory over Genoa.

Dejan Kulusevski, Alvaro Morata and Weston McKennie were on target as Juve took another step towards sealing a Champions League spot with a 3-1 win at Allianz Stadium on Sunday.

Ronaldo has found the back of the net 32 times for the Bianconeri this season, but cut a frustrated figure after he was unable to add to his tally in Turin.

The Portugal captain struck the post in the first half before Morata followed up to double Juve's lead and hit the target only twice in six attempts.

Ronaldo whipped off his shirt and hurled it on the turf following the final whistle and head coach Pirlo had no problem with that reaction.

Pirlo said: "He was keen on scoring. He is one of the champions because they always want to leave their mark, but these are normal things that happen."

Juve came under pressure after dominating the first half and were in danger of losing their lead following Gianluca Scamacca's goal early in the second half.

Pirlo was concerned by the manner in which they let Genoa come back into the game.

He added: "It all seemed easy, at the end of the first half we suffered an opportunity due to lack of concentration.

"It had happened to us in other games, it could cost us dearly. We entered the field wanting to play the game but we sat back."

Paulo Dybala had to once again settle for being introduced as a substitute after coming off the bench to score in a huge win over Napoli amid speculation over his future.

Pirlo defended his decision not to start the playmaker, who spent a lengthy spell on the sidelines with a knee injury.

The former Italy midfielder said: "I'm lucky enough to coach the champions and Dybala is one of them so I try to be able to make the most of him in every game.

"We didn't have him available very much this year, now he's back and it will help us to give us a hand in this final rush. The managers are there for these decisions."

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    Massimiliano Allegri warned that his Juventus players sometimes become too relaxed as he implored for improvements after defeating Udinese.

    Goals from Paulo Dybala and Weston McKennie saw Juve claim a 2-0 triumph on Saturday, lifting fifth-placed Juve onto the same points as Atalanta, who occupy the last Champions League qualification spot.

    Atalanta do have two games in hand, however, as the race for the final place in Europe's premier competition hots up.

    Despite Juve's victory, Allegri outlined his reasons for frustration with some parts of the performance at the Allianz Stadium.

    "We held out mentally and technically for 120 minutes on Wednesday, but there was a moment tonight when we just left the game," Allegri told Sky Sport Italia.

    "That's not right, we always have to be fully focused, especially when there aren't enough fans to keep us on our toes, because for 10 minutes we ran some big risks.

    "The thing we absolutely cannot do without is intensity, tempo and aggression, because if we don't drop the intensity level, then we don't get distracted and can make our technique count.

    "I looked at the line-up, we had Matthijs de Ligt born in 1999, [Dejan] Kulusevski 2000, [Moise] Kean 2000, [Luca] Pellegrini 1999, the oldest was [Juan] Cuadrado and the others all between 20 and 23 years old. 

    "You can lack some experience and understanding in those moments of when to hold off and when to control it."

    Allegri assured, though, that with experience will come the understanding of how to control such moments in any given fixture.

    "We made a mistake in the second half, thinking we were relaxed and in charge, so we drifted out of the game. It's not about finding a leader, it's about the general maturity as a whole," he said.

    "You need experience in every profession, nobody is born knowing everything.

    "We need patience. I did get very angry at that moment, but I talked to them afterwards and tried to make them understand. The important thing is they understand quickly and it has to be done on an individual level, whether they are at Juventus or elsewhere."

    Juve are next in Serie A action on Sunday when they travel to face Milan.

  • 'Juve don't play good football' – Dybala expresses frustration as contract issue rumbles on 'Juve don't play good football' – Dybala expresses frustration as contract issue rumbles on

    Paulo Dybala said Juventus "don't play good football" after refusing to celebrate his goal in Saturday's 2-0 Serie A win over Udinese.

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    The result stretched Juve's unbeaten streak to eight games – only Inter have a longer run (12) – while they moved level on points with fourth-placed Atalanta as they chase a Champions League qualification spot.

    Since the start of November, Juve have gained 26 points in Serie A – more than any other side in this period, although Inter (25) and Atalanta (22) have played two fewer games.

    Dybala was less than complementary about Juve's playing style, though, and said they need to focus on working harder than their opponents during the closing months of the season.

    "I think we played well. We must try to be more consistent after scoring goals, as too often we score and then start to defend more, become afraid of attacking, and we can't keep doing that," he added.

    "We are Juventus, of course we are in the running for the Champions League spots and must try to win. We don't play good football; that is not our strength, so we need to focus on hunger and trying to run harder than anyone else."

    Juve are next in action on Tuesday when they host Sampdoria in the last 16 of the Coppa Italia. 

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    Alejandro Gomez opened the scoring for the visitors in the Seville derby at Estadio Benito Villamarin on Saturday but Nabil Fekir restored parity four minutes later.

    While Betis' players wheeled off in celebration, Sevilla midfielder Jordan was struck by a projectile from the crowd that appeared to hit him on the head.

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