Ronaldo strike leads Juventus to Scudetto victory

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Juventus clinched a ninth successive Scudetto thanks to goals from Cristiano Ronaldo and Federico Bernardeschi in a 2-0 win over Sampdoria.

Cristiano Ronaldo's 31st Serie A goal of the season and Federico Bernardeschi's second-half effort delivered a ninth successive Scudetto for Juventus as they defeated Sampdoria 2-0.

Juve knew three points would clinch another title but, having won just one of their previous five games, they needed a moment of magic from their talisman in first-half stoppage time to set them on their way.

Ronaldo swept home following a well-worked Miralem Pjanic free-kick for his 10th goal since the league resumed - making him the most prolific player across Europe's top five leagues following the coronavirus-enforced break - and it was an unlikely source who wrapped up the triumph as Bernardeschi scored his first Serie A goal since September 2018.

Juve's night of celebration was only slightly spoiled by injuries to Danilo, Paulo Dybala and Matthijs de Ligt, while Ronaldo slammed a late penalty against the crossbar to miss out on equalling a club record.

Injuries, rather than chances, were the story early on as Samp's Julian Chabot and Juve's Danilo were forced off before Dybala made way too.

Danilo's replacement Bernardeschi forced Emil Audero into a save, but he then failed to hit the target with a set-piece, leading to Juve getting creative from their next dead-ball situation near goal.

Pjanic cut the ball into space for Ronaldo, whose first-time effort found its way into the bottom corner of the net to give Juve a half-time advantage.

Sampdoria threatened a comeback though, as Mehdi Leris and Lorenzo Tonelli both missed the target either side of a Gaston Ramirez free-kick that Wojciech Szczesny had to claw out.

However, Maurizio Sarri's men could breathe easier when Bernardeschi followed up Ronaldo's saved effort in the 67th minute to score a long-overdue goal.

Any slim hopes Sampdoria had were extinguished when Morten Thorsby received a 77th-minute red card for a second caution following a lunge on Pjanic, with De Ligt then swiftly removed having seemingly sustained a knock in an earlier challenge.

Ronaldo could have added an 89th-minute exclamation point when Fabio Depaoli brought down Alex Sandro in the box, but the Portugal great's effort came back off the woodwork.

With the Scudetto wrapped up, Ronaldo and others may be rested for the final Serie A fixtures against Cagliari and Roma next week before the Bianconeri resume their Champions League campaign against Lyon in 12 days' time. Sampdoria host Milan on Wednesday before rounding out the campaign at Brescia.

Source Omnisport