This wasn’t an easy game to start with for both Ronaldo and Juventus, as Chievo gave them a run for the money. The hosts went 2-1 ahead, before the 7-time champions turned the game around and made it 3-2.
Juventus took the lead early through Sami Khedira, but Mariusz Stepinski and Emanuele Giaccherini took the hosts on a position of comfort.
But then, veteran defender Leonardo Bonucci equalised late in the second half, and Fernando Bernardeschi scored an injury-time winner.
Massimiliano Allegri bought well this summer, and got in a host of key players to challenge for the UEFA Champions League. Ronaldo was the marquee signing of the window, and was expected to do well in the side’s opening game.
He lined up in a front four alongside Paulo Dybala, Douglas Costa, and Juan Cuadrado, and the manager brought on Mario Mandzukic later to support Ronaldo, and it seemed to work – the point that the fans on social media talked about frequently.
Ronaldo to the left, Mandzukic playing the center forward. Don’t overthink it.
— Giuseppe La Rocca (@GiuseppeLaRock) August 19, 2018
Managed to stay up and watch most of Cristiano Ronaldo’s Juventus debut. Difficult start to life in Italy but it was never going to be easy. Credit to Chievo. Do think Ronaldo looked better when Allegi introduced Mandzukic in the second half. #ChievoJuve #SerieA
— Sacha Pisani (@Sachk0) August 18, 2018
📊 | Cristiano Ronaldo's Juve debut:
90 Minutes Played
30.4 km/hr Top Sprint Speed
71.4% Shot Accuracy
5/7 Shots on Goal
3 Aerials Won
2 Chances Created
90% Pass Accuracy
27/30 Passes Completed
1/1 Accurate Long Ball
1 Ball Recovery
— Arjun Pradeep (@IndianRegista) August 19, 2018
🗣 "Physically, Ronaldo was good on his debut, considering he's only been training with us for seven days. You can see that he's a different player. I was struck by the ease in which he joined the group. He was very happy with the victory."
– Max Allegri. 🇮🇹 pic.twitter.com/OeH7edRUff
— Football Tweet (@Football__Tweet) August 19, 2018
The question is, can Dybala work with Ronaldo and come to great effect? The Argentine was the perfect foil for a natural number nine in Gonzalo Higuain. But with Ronaldo, can he come out strong?
The youngster could be poised to be on the bench more often, as Allegri will be wanting regular wingers in the side to support Ronaldo.
It remains to be seen whether Allegri selects Dybala for the game next game against Lazio, or just sticks to Cuadrado and Costa instead.