ACES HIGH | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 29, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:55 AM, September 29, 2020

ACES HIGH

Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice to salvage a point for 10-man Juventus in a 2-2 draw at Roma as Napoli hammered Genoa 6-0 in Serie A on Sunday.

Champions Juventus were trailing 2-1 and a man down after an hour at the Stadio Olimpico after a Jordan Veretout brace for the hosts and Adrien Rabiot's sending off.

But a towering Ronaldo header grabbed the equaliser in the 69th minute to avoid handing new Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo a first defeat.

"Going behind complicated things but we got an important point," said Ronaldo.

"We're at the start of the season, with a new coach. But the team are working well, I'm confident for the future. "Pirlo? It's still early days, but we're working with a smile, that's important."

Fati thanks to Messi

Barcelona wonderkid Ansu Fati said he is learning from Lionel Messi after firing his side to a 4-0 win over Villarreal in their first game of the La Liga season on Sunday.

With all the pre-match build-up centring on Messi's anger at the club's decision to force Luis Suarez out and join Atletico Madrid, Fati stole the show by giving Barca an early advantage with two expertly taken finishes in the opening 20 minutes.

Fati, 17, who was not even two years old when Messi made his Barca debut back in 2004, recalled a childhood looking up to the six-times world player of the year and said the Argentinean was helping him improve. "Playing with Messi is a dream I had since I was a child and now I am living it," the forward told reporters.

"He gives me a lot of advice, he helps me a lot on the pitch and in training, but away from it too, and that makes me very happy."

Icardi ends goal drought

Mauro Icardi broke a long scoring drought by netting both goals in Paris Saint-Germain's comfortable 2-0 Ligue 1 win at Reims on Sunday night.

PSG, who opened the league season with two losses, won 2-0 for a third straight league game and are now seventh, four points behind leaders Rennes.

"It's important for a striker to score goals," said Icardi after making the scoresheet for the first time since February.

"Today we lacked the efficiency to kill the match earlier, but we are happy with the result."

For the first time since the French Cup final on July 24, PSG started their all their 'Fantastic Four', of Kylian Mbappe, Neymar, Angel di Maria and Icardi.

Icardi stayed cool after nine minutes when Mbappe's pass was a little behind him, defying his long dry spell by controlling the ball neatly with his heel and then driving a low shot inside the far post.

Icardi struck the second goal to seal the points in the 62nd minute. After a neat move, Mbappe rolled a pass to the unmarked forward, who tapped the ball in.

Suarez enjoying new lease of life

Luis Suarez said on Sunday he needed a change when he left Barcelona after marking his Atletico Madrid debut with two goals and an assist.

Suarez's sensational 20-minute cameo came as Atletico started their La Liga season with a thumping 6-1 victory over Granada.

He set up a goal two minutes after coming on as a substitute, his sumptuous pass finished off by Marcos Llorente, before scoring himself with a powerful header at the back post.

The 33-year-old then added another in injury time, following up his own shot to make it six for a rampant Atletico at the Wanda Metropolitano. "Sometimes it is important to have a change as a player," said Suarez.

"I've come to a club that has given me a spectacular welcome, it shows in the atmosphere, you get a good impression from the beginning, and you can see that on the pitch."

Diego Costa said with a smile: "It's great. One of us bites, the other one hits."

Costa had earlier given Atletico the lead but it was the 31-year-old who made way for Suarez, and he raised doubts about his future after the match.

"I leave my future up to the club. I spoke with the club, with the coach, I made it very clear what was happening, that if I am here, I will fight," said Costa.

"If they see the possibility of me leaving, I'll accept it. I don't want to be a weight."

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