Ronaldo stars as Pirlo starts with win at Juventus

Cristiano Ronaldo scored and assisted as Andrea Pirlo started his first match as Juventus head coach with a comfortable 3-0 win over Sampdoria in Serie A.

Swedish winger Dejan Kulusevski scored on his debut with a calm finish into the bottom left corner to put the Old Lady in front.

Ronaldo, who had earlier hit the crossbar, rounded off the scoring late on from Aaron Ramsey’s pass.

Like Sunday’s other Italian top flight matches, a small number of supporters were at the season opener after the Italian government allowed up to 1,000 fans to attend matches for the first time since March.

Former Milan and Juventus midfielder Pirlo had no senior coaching experience before he was chosen to replace Maurizio Sarri in August, and only received his coaching badge last week.

However, this was a relatively comfortable introduction to his new role, with his side easing to victory against Claudio Ranieri’s team.

“We had an excellent first half, it’s a pity we didn’t end the game right away, we dropped physically in the second half and we knew that they were aiming for break aways, but we were good at controlling them. The relationship with the players is excellent, it is important to have a dialogue with them.” The Juventus boss told in the post match conference.

We are doing it and we hope it continues. Frabotta? He had a great match, he’s a guy who knows how to play and he’s training well, it wasn’t a risk to field him from the start. McKennie arrived with a few more days of preparation and did well. He made a mistake in the setting phase but it was the first and you can forgive.” The Italian added.

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