ROME – Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri said on Saturday he was confident that his new Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo will score his first goal with the team in the upcoming Serie A clash with Sassuolo, after failing to find the back of the net in the previous three matches.
Ronaldo, 33, joined Juve over the summer on a four-year deal for a reported transfer fee of 112 million euros ($130 million), after nine years with Real Madrid.
“Cristiano has been training well and I think that tomorrow could be his day,” Allegri said in a press conference prior to Sunday’s home game against Sassuolo, which is second behind Juventus in the Italian league standings.
“I’m not expecting any more or less from him than he already did in the first three matches,” the Italian coach added, noting that the Portugal international will start alongside Croatia’s Mario Mandzukic in the forward line.
Juve’s coach appeared confident that Ronaldo will go on to score many times this season, saying the forward had so far been very active with many shots on target.
Allegri also gave his opinion that Ronaldo should be named the winner of FIFA’s best player award, although Croatia midfielder Luka Modric, Ronaldo’s former teammate at Real Madrid, had shone in 2018 with both his club and national team, which finished runner-up at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
“I believe that Cristiano deserves to win the FIFA World Player award, even if Luka Modric has had a phenomenal year as well,” Allegri said.
Ronaldo is shortlisted for the best player award alongside Modric and Liverpool talisman Mohamed Salah of Egypt, but did not attend the UEFA’s similar best-player ceremony in which Modric won the award.
Juventus has won all three games this Seria A season and has nine points, two ahead of Sassuolo.