Sarri letting Ronaldo ‘cool off’

Juventus

Juventus boss Maurizio Sarri says Cristiano Ronaldo needs time to "cool off" and the forward will almost certainly sit out Saturday's trip to Atalanta.

Tensions appear to have been rising between Ronaldo and Sarri over recent weeks, with the five-time Ballon d’Or winner having been substituted in each of Juventus’ last two games.

Indeed, the 34-year-old was hauled off after just 55 minutes of Juve’s 1-0 victory over AC Milan before the international break, with the man that replaced him in that match, Paulo Dybala, going on to score the only goal of the game.

Ronaldo stormed down the tunnel after coming off against the Rossoneri, but the official line for his substitution was that he was nursing an ongoing knee problem, something the star later acknowledged. 

However, the former Real Madrid and Manchester United player scored four goals in two appearances for Portugal over the international break, including a hat-trick against Lithuania, to suggest he was over the problem.

Indeed, many people would have been expecting Ronaldo to feature this weekend, but Sarri has added fuel to the fire regarding his relationship with the forward, by suggesting that he is still injured, but intriguingly also needs time to “cool off”.

“There’s no need to clarify anything with Ronaldo. Certain players need to be left to cool off,” Sarri told reporters ahead of Saturday’s match.

“The problem is that on Tuesday, he told us that he was still not feeling well.

“Our objective is to have him back for the Champions League. I’m 99 percent sure he won’t make it tomorrow.”

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