Juventus stroll to victory over Sampdoria in Andrea Pirlo’s first match in charge with Cristiano Ronaldo among the scorers in Serie A opener
- Juventus secured a 3-0 win at home to Sampdoria in Andrea Pirlo’s first game
- Cristiano Ronaldo was amongst scorers as he found the net in the 88th minute
- Dejan Kulusevski and Leonardo Bonucci also scored as Juventus prevailed
Andrea Pirlo got his coaching career off to a winning start as Juventus beat Sampdoria 3-0 in Serie A on Sunday.
Dejan Kulusevski scored early on his debut and second half goals from Leonardo Bonucci and Cristiano Ronaldo sealed the result on a day which saw fans return to Serie A stadiums.
It was a positive day for debutants as Weston McKennie – the first American to play for Juventus – had a hand in Bonucci’s goal and also sparked a move which led to Ronaldo hitting the crossbar.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored as Juventus beat Sampdoria in Andrea Pirlo’s first game in charge
It was a successful start for Pirlo as Juventus won their first Serie A game of the season
Dejan Kulusevski is congratulated by his team-mates after putting Juventus in the lead
The experienced Leonardo Bonucci celebrates his goal, which made it 2-0 to Juventus
Juventus: Szczesny; Danilo, Bonucci, Chiellini (Demiral 83); Cuadrado (Bentancur 78), Rabio, McKennie, Frabotta (De Sciglio 67); Ramsey; Kulusevski (Costa 82), Ronaldo
Goals: Kulusevski 13, Bonucci 78, Ronaldo 88
Sampdoria: Audero; Bereszynski, Tonelli (Yoshida 46), Colley, Augello; Ekdal; Depaoli (Ramirez 46), Thorsby (Damsgaard 70), Jankto, Leris (Quagliarella 46); Bonazzoli (Verre 70)
Juventus are bidding for a record-extending 10th straight Serie A title but have an unproven coach in Pirlo.
The former midfield great was handed his first coaching job last month when he was put in charge of Juventus’ under-23 team, who play in Serie C. But he had not led a game before he was promoted to replace the fired Maurizio Sarri.
Juventus played from the start with an intensity which had been lacking for much of last season and took the lead in the 13th minute.
Ronaldo burst into the box and was stopped by a tackle but the ball fell to Kulusevski and the former Parma midfielder curled it into the bottom left corner.
McKennie almost doubled Juve’s lead shortly before the break but he fired narrowly over.
It took Juventus until 12 minutes from time to get their second goal. Sampdoria goalkeeper Emil Audero did well to keep out McKennie’s effort from close range but Bonucci tucked away the rebound.
Ronaldo, who scored 31 league goals last season, managed to get off the mark for this campaign in the final minutes of the match as he ran onto Aaron Ramsey’s throughball and placed a precise drive into the bottom left corner.
Cristiano Ronaldo looks on as he scores his side’s third goal in the clash versus Sampdoria
Ronaldo had earlier struck the crossbar, with Juventus producing an encouraging display
1,000 Juventus supporters were permitted to attend the club’s opening Serie A fixture