Cristiano Ronaldo’s spot-kick helped Juventus to a 2-2 home draw with Sassuolo, but found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time as he blocked a goalbound striker from teammate Paulo Dybala.
The Portuguese superstar’s first Juve goal since October helped pull Juventus out of trouble against a dogged Sassuolo side, but the talismanic forward unwittingly became the hero for the opposition when he blocked Dybala’s 70th-minute effort, which looked all set to put the Turin giants into a 3-2 lead.
The draw meant that Juve lost the lead at the top of the Serie A table, with Inter Milan taking over in pole position in Italy’s top flight.
Juve’s Leonardo Bonucci – who made headlines earlier in the week when he nutmegged Ronaldo in training – opened the scoring, but Sassuolo fired back through Jeremie Boga and Francesco Caputo to put the Serie A strugglers in front in Turin.
But the award of a penalty gave Ronaldo the chance to even the scores midway through the second half, and he duly netted to end his four-game goalless run.
Ronaldo’s strike denied Sassuolo their first-ever victory over Juve in Turin, but things could have been even better had he not found himself in the way of Dybala’s goalbound effort.
“We put ourselves in difficulty, we lost our heads in the first half,” Juve coach Maurizio Sarri told Sky Italia.
“Every time we lost the ball we were wide open. After going behind we played at a good level for 40 minutes and could have even won the match.
“The games after a Champions League week are always difficult because of a lack of energy.”