Juventus beat Napoli in a remarkable Serie A-game. Kalidou Koulibaly’s injury-time own goal negated the visitor’s three-goal comeback.
Cristiano Ronaldo was in action again as his side took on Napoli in Turin on Saturday night. It was a crucial tie for both sides. Even at the early stage, the two teams were looking to set the pace in Serie A.
Both had begun their season off with a win and would have been looking to continue on the same vein.
The champions led by 3-0 through goals from Danilo, former Napoli striker Gonzalo Higuain and Cristiano Ronaldo’s first of the season.
The three summer signings scored to put Napoli level-Kostas Manolas, Hirving Lozano and Giovanni Di Lorenzo. That was in vain as Koulibaly shinned a deep free-kick past his keeper.
Juventus who has won the last eight titles lacked captain Giorgio Chiellini presence. The captain is likely to be out for several months with an anterior cruciate ligament injury.
Maurizio Sarri did not take charge against his former club as he recovers from pneumonia although he was at the Allianz Stadium watching the game.
The contest looked over after 62 minutes with Juventus very impressive in the first half. Former Manchester City defender Danilo replaced the injured Mattia De Sciglio. 29 seconds of his debut, he scored after converting Costa’s cross to finish off a swift counter-attack.
Higuan then doubled the lead brilliantly as he turned Koulibaly before smashing the bouncing ball past Alex Meret with the outside of the foot. Ronaldo added a third goal in the second half as he finished another Costa cross.
Former Roma defender Manolas’ header from Mario Rui’s cross in the 66th minute looked a mere consolation. Two minutes later, they had real hope when Lozano, on his debut following a move from PSV Eindhoven, slotted in from Mario Rui’s cross to become the first Mexican to ever score in Serie A.
Juventus winger, Costa had a good shot tipped on to the woodwork by Meret-and that save later looked like a crucial moment.
The dream looked set to become a reality for Napoli who have finished second to Juventus in three of the past four seasons, when Di Lorenzo, a summer signing from Empoli, beat De Ligt to the ball to scramble home a free-kick.
There was one more Napoli goal scorer but sadly it was into his net as Koulibaly, scorer of a famous winner against Juventus in April 2018 got his angles wrong and rifled Paulo Dybala’s deep free-kick past Meret.