13.05.2021, 10:30

Ronaldo reaches 100 goals for Juve in crucial win at Sassuolo

Ronaldo reaches 100 goals for Juve in crucial win at Sassuolo

Soccer Football - Serie A - U.S. Sassuolo v Juventus - Mapei Stadium - Citta del Tricolore, Reggio Emilia, Italy - May 12, 2021 Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo in action. (Photo: Reuters)    

Cristiano Ronaldo's 100th goal for Juventus in all competitions kept alive his side's hopes of a top-four Serie A finish after a 3-1 away win against an impressive Sassuolo on Wednesday.

The result was not easy to come by for Juve, with returning goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon saving an early penalty, but goals from Adrien Rabiot, Ronaldo and Paulo Dybala meant they stayed fifth, two points off the Champions League qualification places.

* Inter Milan stretched their unbeaten Serie A run to 20 games as the champions eased to a 3-1 victory over AS Roma on Wednesday. Already crowned Serie A winners for the first time in 11 years, Inter showed no sign of letting up as goals from Marcelo Brozovic, Matias Vecino and Romelu Lukaku preserved their 13-point lead at the top with two games to play.

* A hat-trick from Ante Rebic helped AC Milan thrash struggling Torino 7-0 in Serie A on Wednesday to move a step closer to securing a return to the Champions League next season.

* Chelsea slipped up in their push for a Champions League spot when they lost 1-0 at home to Arsenal in the Premier League on Wednesday (May 12) with Emile Smith Rowe's first-half goal settling the London derby after a defensive mix-up by the hosts.

* Holders Paris St Germain reached the French Cup final after a nailbiting 6-5 penalty shootout win at Montpellier as the match ended 2-2 in regular time after the home side twice came from behind on Wednesday.

* Atletico Madrid held their nerve to beat Real Sociedad 2-1 on Wednesday (May 12) and move within touching distance of winning La Liga. Another victory for Atletico this weekend would knock Barca out of the race regardless of what the Catalans do against Celta Vigo while Real Madrid would also concede if they had not taken six points from Granada and Sunday's trip to Athletic Bilbao.

* A second-half strike from Youssef En-Nesyri gave Sevilla a 1-0 home win over Valencia on Wednesday to keep alive their slim hopes in La Liga's title race. Sevilla remain fourth in the standings after 36 games but moved on to 74 points, three behind leaders Atletico Madrid, who play at home to Real Sociedad later on Wednesday.

* Spanish referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz will take charge of his first Champions League final when Chelsea face Manchester City on May 29, UEFA said on Wednesday. Mateu Lahoz officiated in six Champions League ties this season, including the quarter-final first-leg match between Bayern Munich and Paris St Germain. He will be assisted by countrymen Pau Cebrian Devis and Roberto Diaz Perez del Palomar.

* Former Manchester United captain Antonio Valencia has announced his retirement from professional soccer at the age of 35. Ecuador international Valencia arrived at Manchester United from Wigan Athletic following Cristiano Ronaldo's departure to Real Madrid in 2009. Valencia made an instant impact on the right flank and helped United win two Premier League titles, an FA Cup, two League Cups, three Community Shields and the Europa League.

* Hertha Berlin took a big step towards Bundesliga survival for next season with a 2-1 comeback win at bottom side Schalke on Wednesday (May 12).

* Irish MMA fighter Conor McGregor was the world's highest-paid athlete over the last year ahead of soccer players Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, according to the annual Forbes list released on Wednesday. During the 12-month period ending May 1, 2021 McGregor earned US$180 million, a figure which includes US$158 million from endorsements and the recent sale of the majority stake of his whiskey brand, Forbes said.

* Japan's Naomi Osaka crashed out of the Italian Open on Wednesday (May 12) after a 7-6 (7/2), 6-2 second round defeat to American Jessica Pegula in the clay-court warm-up ahead of Roland Garros.

* Serena Williams, playing the 1,000th Tour-level match of her glittering career, suffered a shock 7-6(6) 7-5 defeat by Argentina's Nadia Podoroska in the Italian Open second round on Wednesday.

* Former French Open champion Simona Halep retired from her Italian Open second-round match against Angelique Kerber on Wednesday with a calf injury, raising doubts over her participation at Roland Garros. Third seed Halep was leading 6-1 3-3 when she showed discomfort while trying to reach a first serve from her German opponent.

* The Singapore Open badminton tournament will be cancelled, as announced by organisers Singapore Badminton Association (SBA) and the Badminton World Federation (BWF) on Wednesday (May 12). The tournament, which was due to be held from Jun 1 to 6, will not be rescheduled.

* Southampton full back Ryan Bertrand will leave the club when his contract expires at the end of the season, drawing the curtains on a seven-year stint at St Mary's Stadium, the Premier League club said on Wednesday. Since permanently moving to Southampton from Chelsea in 2015, Bertrand, 31, quickly established himself as an influential member of the first-team squad and has made 240 club appearances, scoring eight times.

* UEFA on Wednesday (May 12) initiated disciplinary proceedings against Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus, the three clubs yet to renounce the aborted European Super League project. European football's governing body has appointed disciplinary inspectors to conduct an investigation regarding a potential violation of UEFA rules by the clubs "in connection with the so-called 'Super League' project", it announced.

* Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk on Wednesday (May 12) ruled himself out of the Netherlands squad for Euro 2020 to focus on being fit for the start of the next Premier League season. The influential centre-back, who captains his national side, has been out of action for seven months after undergoing surgery on a ruptured cruciate ligament in his right knee.

* Portuguese soccer fans will be able to attend top-flight matches in the final round of fixtures this season, organisers said on Wednesday, as the country gears up to host the Champions League final later this month. A statement from the Portuguese league said stadiums would be at 10per cent capacity for the games on May 19.

* Australian Caleb Ewan sprinted to victory but two favourites saw their GC hopes go up in smoke in a crash-hit climax to stage five of the Giro d'Italia on Wednesday. The Lotto Soudal rider surged through to beat Italian Giacomo Nizzolo on the line alongside the Adriatic resort of Cattolica with Elia Viviani in third place.

* Spain's Sports minister Jose Manuel Uribes on Wednesday said spectators would be allowed to attend football matches held in stadiums, at 30% occupancy, and only in regions with fewer than 50 COVID cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

* Qatari side Al-Sadd announced on Wednesday (May 12) former Spain midfielder Xavi has signed a contract extension to keep him as their coach until 2023. Xavi, 41, has been linked with a move back to Barcelona to replace Ronald Koeman but the 2010 World Cup winner denied the reports in the Spanish press.