Finally it happened: Ronaldo scored from the penalty. Was it really worth trying?

Do you remember those glorious days, when Cristiano Ronaldo took more than five hours to score his first goal for Juventus? It seems so long ago – especially when you consider that he already broke the record of Juventus, scored a goal in each of their 11 matches in Serie A. And in the recent Derby, he won the title of first player to Juventus, who scored 25 in a single season.

Why I remembered this story? The fact that his first goal in black and white form could fly from the free-kick. Five-time winner of the Golden ball went through nine players “Chievo”, and only Stefano Sorrentino prevented him to fly into the net. Soon, he will become the first goalkeeper will block the penalty Ronaldo.

Almost two years have passed since, and finally Cristiano scored his penalty area. The impact of the Portuguese Maurizio Sarri has called “extraordinary”. And what technique – just yum! Really, instead of the traditional guns Ronaldo decided to strike more softly and precisely than usual. And when we look at his interview after the match, it becomes obvious how long the 35-year-old striker was waiting for this moment. “I needed this kick in order to regain confidence,” he said in Spanish in an interview with Sky Italia, pretty surprising their fans, accustomed to the fact that it is something that, as confidence in the rooms in abundance.

Sarri also looked happy. The goal was not only beautiful, but also allowed Juve to exhale quietly. But even the coach didn’t realize that his ward that goal was more important. “I never thought about it. Then, when after the game he said, “finally!”, I realized that maybe he was suffering all this time.”

It was a 43-attempt in the Italian career of Cristiano. 2.3% of scored strikes – perhaps the statistic that is worth bragging about, and many have rightly noted that he does not need to try. However, we have to admit that he was very unlucky in November last year, when the strongest free-kick almost guaranteed a goal against Moscow “Locomotive”, but then to attack I decided to connect Aaron Ramsey, sakamushi the already doomed the ball past Guilherme. While the teammates surrounded Ronaldo, who made that goal, the Welshman could only raise his hands, apologizing for “stealing”.

If, then, the Russian goalie was nothing I could do about it, at other times rivals were doing wonders. For example, Jan Oblak of Atletico miraculously fought off a perfect hit in February last year. If we look at the statistics from StatsBomb, where white squares indicate a penalty, and gray color – blocking, we will see that this season from 14 attempts, eight of them were stopped by the wall. Not counting the far distance where the gun is Ronaldo always useful, it is more logical to penalty to put Miraluma of Pjanic or Paulo Dibala.

No one can take away from the Portuguese that in the last ten years he successfully performed 21 free-kick (more – 34 – only Lionel Messi), but we can’t score and the fact that his Bosnian teammate is a true master of the standards, possibly even the “new Pirlo”. He scored less (16 times), but it hits much better. Even hurt, it almost did not get a chance to score.

Goals from a free-kick from the season 2009/10




The percentage of hits

Lionel Messi




Cristiano Ronaldo




Miralem Pjanić




Hakan Çalhanoğlu




Francesco Lodi




On average Panico had 19 free throws in the season before the arrival of Ronaldo in 2018. Now he is content with an average of 6.5 chances, and hardly anything has changed after his move to Barcelona with Lionel Messi. But do not forget that we are talking about protege Juninho Pernambucano, who worked with the famous Brazilian at Lyon! Alas, he is destined to remain forever in the shadow of the two greatest players of our time. As far as Dibala, who is still in a state of Nirvana, his / her stats to 15.9 percent of successful attacks – is the best in the top leagues of Europe since 2009. That November ball “Atletico” it is difficult to explain the laws of physics.

Given that this season Juventus scored with great difficulty (at the time of the forced pause their attack took fourth place in performance), it would be logical to give her the best performers to do what they can best. But while fans whine after another penalty, Cristiano, TV broadcasters remain satisfied with each opportunity the chance to show a close-up preparing to punch its brand image of Portuguese. It was his unique ritual attracts neutrals, and that means money.

And finally we should not forget that under the leadership of Surry has a lot of chances for goals with standards – high pressure forcing the opponent to cuddle up to their half and helps Juve to win physical battles and to be in favorable positions to strike.

Opportunities for the free kick


Won fouls









Elusive techies like Douglas Costa, Federico Bernardeschi, Dibala and Ronaldo constantly force opponents to break the rules close to their gate. StatsBomb confirms that such fouls – and therefore opportunities – in this season.

More chances for Dibala install golesnik his left…

Or Target – punching with his left from the opposite flank…

Or, of course, for Ronaldo to once again try to refute the statistics of the expected goals and circle the wall.

In the Champions League, few can boast this set of performers. We can only guess what will change after the long-awaited goal of the Portuguese, and do not have any again for a couple of years to wait for the next.

Translation and adaptation of Denis KOSHELEV

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