Chiellini scores as Juve beat Parma in Serie A opener

Juventus kicked started the 2019/20 Serie A season with all three points when they claimed a 1-0 win over Parma, courtesy of a first-half goal by Giorgio Chiellini, at Tardini Stadium, while Cristiano Ronaldo had a goal ruled out by VAR.

Maurizio Sarri wasn’t on the bench for the Bianconeri, due to his struggle with pneumonia, and it was Giovanni Martusciello who stood in his place.

The starting XI included Szczesny in goal, with De Sciglio, Bonucci, Chiellini and Alex Sandro safeguarding the defence. In midfield was Khedira, Matuidi and Pjanic, while Douglas Costa, Higuain and Ronaldo lead the attack.

A chance fell at both ends of the stadium, inside the opening 13 minutes, when Khedira delivered a great long ball into the box, only for Ronaldo to head it over. Parma then went on the counter-attack and it allowed Roberto Inglese to whip an effort at goal, which forced Tek to make a save. The deadlock was then broken in the 22nd minute, after a cross was delivered into the box. Sepe initially punched it away, but after two deflections, the ball worked its way back into the box, only for Chiellini to poke it over the line! That would be the first goal of the 2019/20 Serie A season.

Cristiano Ronaldo then came close to doubling the lead minutes later when Higuain laid off a ball for the Portuguese. He then attempted to direct it into the back of the net, but the ball flickered past the face of goal.

Ronaldo thought he had made it 2-0 in the 34th minute, when Douglas Costa brilliantly ran up the field and passed him the ball. CR7 then burst into the box, did a step over before blasting the ball into the back of the net, however, the goal didn’t stand as VAR ruled Ronaldo off for offside.

The start of the second half saw a few chances fall for Juventus, while on the stroke of the hour, Rabiot was introduced for his first official debut in place of Khedira. Ronaldo then forced Sepe into action again when he struck a bullet of an effort from the edge of the box, but the Parma goalkeeper held out made the saves. Juan Cuadrado then came on in place of Douglas Costa, before Ronaldo once again struck a powerful effort that saw Sepe palm it over the crossbar.

The Bianconeri did enjoy some good movement in the 80th minute of the game, which saw Cuadrado start the move on the right edge of the box, before it worked all its way to the left. Matuidi then crossed it in, but Higuain couldn’t turn it on goal. 

Bernardeschi was then introduced into the game in the 83rd minute for Pepita. Hernani came close to almost snatching a late equalizer inside stoppage time when Hernani struck a powerful free-kick from distance, that sailed inches past Tek’s goal. That was the last dangerous moment of the game, as Juve went on to claim the victory.

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