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No Ronaldo, No Party: Juventus lose first league game of the season

530   //    17 Mar 2019, 19:46 IST

Genoa CFC v Juventus - Serie A
Genoa CFC v Juventus - Serie A

What's the story?

Juventus were handed their first loss in the Italian top flight this season on Sunday when they were defeated 2-0 by Genoa at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris.

In case you didn't know...

Juventus decided to rest Cristiano Ronaldo on Sunday for their away trip to Genoa after the star striker scored a hat trick in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday night against Atletico Madrid.

The heart of the matter

After having played their first 27 Serie A matches of the current campaign without a loss, Juventus were beaten by a motivated Genoa side on Sunday afternoon. The Bianconeri entered the contest 18 points clear of second place Napoli and opted to rest their superstar in order to keep him fresh for the remainder of the season.

Ronaldo has featured in 25 matches already this season and Massimiliano Allegri felt that the Portuguese international deserved a break.

However, Juventus struggled to find the back of the net without the 34-year-old and as a result, they had their undefeated record snapped.

Despite the loss, Juventus are cruising to their eighth consecutive Scudetto and should not be affected too much. They had gone undefeated under Antonio Conte in 2011-2012 and were hoping to do so again this year after investing so heavily in Ronaldo.

What's next?

Following the international break, Juventus will take on Empoli next in domestic competition on March 30th at home. They then take on Cagliari and Milan before their crucial UEFA Champions League quarter-final date with Dutch giants Ajax.

While the Italians will be disappointed to not have gone undefeated in Serie A, they have their eyes on winning Europe's most prestigious club competition for the first time since 1996. If they are able to win the Champions League, Sunday's defeat against Genoa will long be forgotten.