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Football Briefs: Ronaldo miss turns into an assist as Juve beat Lazio

August 26, 2018 10:09 IST
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Juventus' Mario Mandzukic celebrates scoring their second goal with Cristiano Ronaldo during their Serie A match against Lazio at the Allianz Stadium in Turin on Saturday

IMAGE: Juventus' Mario Mandzukic celebrates scoring their second goal with Cristiano Ronaldo during their Serie A match against Lazio at the Allianz Stadium in Turin on Saturday. Photograph: Massimo Pinca/Reuters

Cristiano Ronaldo missed an open goal but inadvertently provided an assist for Mario Mandzukic to score as titleholders Juventus beat Lazio 2-0 in Serie A on Saturday.

Juventus, chasing an eighth successive title, have six points from two games after a somewhat fortunate win, but Ronaldo is still waiting for his first goal since his move from Real Madrid.

 

Miralem Pjanic rifled Juventus ahead in the 30th minute with a shot from outside the area before the Turin side added a second in the 75th minute in untidy fashion.

Joao Cancelo's low cross from the right was partially intercepted by Lazio goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha but he succeeded only in pushing the ball to Ronaldo.

The Portuguese turned the ball towards goal with his right foot but his left heel blocked the shot and the ball rebounded into the path of Croatia World Cup forward Mandzukic, who swept it home.

The closest Ronaldo came to breaking his duck was with a vicious dipping effort on the turn in the 71st minute, but it was brilliantly turned over the bar by the Albanian goalkeeper

Juventus goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny, again preferred ahead of new signing Mattia Perin, made two key saves in the first half, turning Senad Lulic's shot around the post and then charging out of his goal to block a dangerous Marco Parolo break.

"Italian football is completely different to in Spain. Ronaldo understands that and he is settling in very well," said Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri.

"There was a risk of us getting carried away by the enthusiasm created by Ronaldo's first home appearance," added the coach, who picked Blaise Matuidi and Federico Bernardeschi ahead of Paulo Dybala and Juan Cuadrado.

"I have a very strong squad and have to evaluate everyone. We needed these characteristics in midfield today," he said.

"There are times we are too frenetic and other moments when we go to sleep. We have to find a better balance."

Cavani makes quick impact as PSG win again

Paris St Germain's Edinson Cavani celebrates scoring their first goal with Neymar and Kylian Mbappe during their Ligue 1 match against Angers at the Parc des Princes in Paris on Saturday

IMAGE: Paris St Germain's Edinson Cavani celebrates scoring their first goal with Neymar and Kylian Mbappe during their Ligue 1 match against Angers at the Parc des Princes in Paris on Saturday. Photograph: Christian Hartmann/Reuters

Paris St Germain forward Edinson Cavani struck 12 minutes into his first match of the season while Kylian Mbappe and Neymar also scored in a 3-1 win over lowly Angers in Ligue 1 on Saturday.

The visitors put up a brave fight in the first half, levelling through a Thomas Mangani penalty after Cavani's early goal.

But the almost inevitable eventual loss left them with three straight league defeats this season while titleholders PSG have the same number of wins.

PSG coach Thomas Tuchel rested 40-year-old goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon and gave Alphonse Areola -- last season's first choice -- his first outing of the campaign.

Uruguay forward Cavani, injured during the World Cup, was also included for the first time after regaining full fitness -- and he made an immediate impact.

Angers lost possession in midfield and paid dearly as Neymar got free on the right and his pass was deflected into the path of Cavani for last season's Ligue 1 top scorer to net from close range, with little more than ten minutes gone.

Cavani thumped the foot of the post with a downward header minutes later but Angers refused to cave in and stunned the hosts by equalising in the 22nd minute.

PSG defender Thilo Kehrer, making his debut after his move from Schalke 04, gave away a penalty with a clumsy tackle on Flavien Tait and Mangani converted from the spot.

Angers looked comfortable until PSG regained the lead six minutes after halftime when Angel Di Maria's cross was volleyed home by Mbappe for his third league goal of the season.

The 19-year-old World Cup winner then set up the third for Neymar, exchanging passes with Adrien Rabiot before cutting the ball back for the Brazilian to score easily.

Wolfsburg stun Schalke 2-1 with stoppage-time winner

VfL Wolfsburg's Daniel Ginczek snatched a stoppage-time winner to stun Schalke 04 2-1 on Saturday and give the Wolves a winning start to the Bundesliga campaign against last season's runners-up in a bad-tempered game.

Schalke substitute Nabil Bentaleb scored an 85th-minute penalty to level the match but Ginczek grabbed the last-gasp winner deep into added time after Schalke had failed to clear an earlier effort.

The Royal Blues, who will compete in the Champions League group stage, were surprised when John Brooks, unmarked at the far post, headed in to give Wolfsburg the lead in the 33rd minute.

Disciplined and hard-working, the Wolves looked eager to earn a winning start after needing a relegation playoff victory last season to stay up.

Schalke tried to seize back the initiative but it was Wolfsburg who looked likelier to score again, and to make matters worse the visitors were left with 10 men when Nastasic was sent off for a foul in the 65th minute.

Moments later Wolfsburg's Wout Weghorst also got his marching orders after shoving an opponent to the ground but the referee changed his decision to a yellow card after reviewing the video.

In a chaotic period, Schalke were awarded a penalty and Brooks initially sent off for his challenge before the referee realised he was showing the wrong card to the player and Brooks was booked instead.

Bentaleb kept his cool to send Koen Casteels the wrong way but Wolfsburg still had something left in the tank and Ginczek scored in the dying seconds in a game that featured eight yellow cards.

"The boys worked hard, kept believing and rewarded themselves with an equaliser," said Schalke coach Domenico Tedesco. "But in the end we still lost. That is a shame. We did not play well in the first half but after the break we did it better."

Borussia Moenchengladbach struck twice in three minutes early in the second half to beat Bayer Leverkusen 2-0. Gladbach also squandered a first-half penalty when Thorgan Hazard's effort was saved by Bayer keeper Ramazan Oezcan.

Eintracht Frankfurt bounced back from their German Super Cup defeat by Bayern Munich and their shock German Cup first-round exit with a 2-0 win at Freiburg.

Augsburg also got three points after edging promoted Fortuna Dusseldorf 2-1 while Hertha Berlin beat Nuremberg, back in the Bundesliga this season, 1-0 thanks to Vedad Ibisevic's winner.

Champions Bayern Munich kicked off their season with a 3-1 win over Hoffenheim on Friday. Borussia Dortmund host RB Leipizg in their season opener on Sunday.

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Source: REUTERS
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