Cristiano Ronaldo and Welshman Aaron Ramsey’s goals helped Juventus on Sunday secure a 3-1 win over 10-man Sassuolo in Serie A, improving the champion to fourth in the standings.
Juventus failed to create many opportunities in the first half following its midweek victory at leader AC Milan, but its cause was helped after Pedro Obiang was sent off for a dangerous tackle on Federico Chiesa just before halftime.
As Danilo was left in plenty of room to fire a ferocious opener at home in the 50th minute, Juventus capitalized on the numerical advantage, but the lead lasted only eight minutes as Gregoire Defrel stumbled to shock the host.
With his first goal of the season, Ramsey, who has been in and out of the side this season, but Juve in front in the 82nd minute. In comparison, Serie A top scorer Ronaldo took the tally of his season to 15 as he scored to complete the victory in stoppage time.
The outcome helped Juve close the gap to seven points with Milan’s leader, having played one game less. Sassuolo remains in the seventh position.
After scoring three times in midweek in Milan, Juve’s strikeforce was unable to make it to Juventus Stadium in the first half.
The dismissal of Obiang, however, gave Juve a boost, with the referee giving a straight red card after the VAR asked the official to take another look at the midfielder’s Chiesa studs-up tackle.
Danilo’s third Juventus goal calmed the nerves of the hosts, but despite being a man down as Defrel shot them level, Sassuolo, enjoying a fine season, was not overawed and they had some other chances of taking the lead.
In the first half, Ramsey, who substituted the wounded Weston McKennie, got the all-important second, arriving on cue to meet a Gianluca Frabotta cross, before Ronaldo drilled home to ensure Juve’s third consecutive victory.