What a magnificent bounce back for the Bianconeri following the wet blanket that was the Derby d’Italia. Juventus defeated Napoli 2-0 thanks to two bellissimo goals delivered by Cristiano Ronaldo and Alvaro Morata to send Aurelio De Laurentiis back to Italian Detroit trophyless. The victory seals the first trophy for manager Andrea Pirlo and gets the club back on a good track as they try to right the ship in the scudetto race. But for now, it is a beautiful evening to celebrate Juventus’ latest hardware addition to the trophy case.
Notice: All ratings are calculated through a stringent process utilizing statistics and the eye test called My Opinion and are most certainly incorrect.
Wojciech Szczesny - 7
Tek had a massive stop in the 21’ on a dangerous Napoli attack and was assisted by a Chiellini clearance to maintain the scoreless tie. At point blank range from Lozano, Szczesny stood his ground and deflected the header away for a great save in the 28’. Tek had a monumental save goal off of his foot in the 90’+4’ to keep Napoli scoreless in the Supercoppa Italiana. The Poliash keeper is one of the most underrated keepers in Serie A and European football. Szczesny contributed three saves, one successful run out, two saves from inside of the box, and four accurate long balls.
Juan Cuadrado - 7
The Columbian saw game minutes for the first time in days following a recent recovery from COVID-19. Cuadrado showed exactly why his presence was missed so much on the pitch; creating opportunities on the offensive end and cracking down to get a defensive stop on Lozano in the 43’ following an Insigne run out. Cuadrado showed off his prowess and awareness, capping off the match with a last second dish to Alvaro Morata for the victory cigar. It is good to have Juan back in the fold. His presence is necessary for the success of the club this season. Cuadrado contributed one assist, one clearance, three interceptions, two tackles, nine ground duels won, one aerial duel won, two key passes, one accurate cross, six accurate long balls, one big chance created, and five successful dribbles.
Leonardo Bonucci - 6.5
Bonucci had a quiet first half, but delivered a beautifully placed pass to Ronaldo at the 36’ that the striker was unable to create a score out of. Though a limited action by the defender, it is this kind of creativity that is much needed in the Juventus midfield. The Bonucci, Chiellini, and Danilol combo held the Napoli attack scoreless, sealing a clean sheet in a hardware match. Bonucci contributed one clearance, one blocked shot, one interception, one tackle, one ground duel won, nine accurate long balls, and one shot off target.
Giorgio Chiellini - 6.5
Captain Kong took a brutal elbow to the face in the first 17’ of the Supercoppa, but refused to allow the damage suffered to hinder his play on the field. Chiellini combined with Tek to save and clear a dangerous Napoli strike in the 21’. The Chiellini, Bonucci, and Danilo combo kept a clean sheet to help win the club its latest trophy. Chiellini contributed six clearances, one interception, one ground duel won, and two aerial duels won.
Danilo Luiz da Silva - 5.5
The Brazilian defender wins today’s anonymous player of the match. I faintly remember Danilo participating in a handful of plays, but overall the player was less than memorable. Granted that might be due to the positive play of his fellow defenders and Juventus controlling twelve percent more of the possession than Napoli. Danilo contributed one clearance, one interception, three ground duels won, seven accurate long balls, one offsides call, and two successful dribbles.
Weston McKennie - 6
Starting McKennie from the bench will never make sense to me. It was evident early the effort and energy the American injects into the team as well as the creativity the midfield has been missing for over a season and a half. In the 78’ a penalty was awarded for a horrific play by Dries Mertens who blatantly steps in front of McKennie and gets kicked without even making a football play on the ball. The football gods shined down moments later as Lorenzo Insigne missed the penalty far wide of the goal. McKennie was unhindered and continued to make bulldog plays on the ball chasing it all over the field. Pure hustle that warms this Juventus fan’s heart. McKennie contributed three key passes, one accurate cross, one big chance created, three successful dribbles, four ground duels won, one clearance, one interception, one tackle, and (unfairly) committed one penalty.
Arthur Melo - 6.5
The Brazilian’s first efforts on the pitch began by booting a shot way over the goal in the 9’. There are moments when Arthur attempts to take the ball one on one against a defender or start a run out that it is quite obvious the Brazilian is much slower than his competitors, but Arthur’s awareness and ball handling help negate any deficiencies. Arthur contributed one key pass, four accurate long balls, one shot off target, one successful dribble, four ground duels won, one aerial duel won, one clearance, one interception, and three tackles.
Rodrigo Bentancur - 6
The Uruguayan had a solid match in a revamped midfield with the inclusions of Arthur and McKennie from the start. Bentancur contributed two accurate long balls, two ground duels won, one aerial duel won, six interceptions, and one tackle.
Federico Chiesa - 5
Chiesa started the match playing from the left wing as opposed to his traditional spot on the right wing. And it was fairly obvious that the Italian winger was not nearly as comfortable playing out of position; getting his pocket picked multiple times in the first half and overall unable to get anything going offensively. Though it could also be attributed to the ankle pain determined at the half, the same pain that kept the Italian out of the Genoa game. Chiesa contributed one key pass and one ground duel won. Federico Chiesa was substituted out for Federico Bernardeschi at halftime due to an injury.
Dejan Kulusevski - 5
The Swede received an opportunity to cement himself as a potential fix for the fourth striker position, should the rumored pursuit of Gianluca Scamacca not come to fruition. Unfortunately, the player kept a low profile for almost all of the match. The one memorable moment that comes to mind was the run out the Swedish striker had to create an opportunity for Federico Bernardeschi for a potential goal midway through the second half and put a little too much mustard on the pass, directing it far wide of the Italian and Kulusevski contributed one blocked shot, three successful dribbles, one key pass, three ground duels won, and one offsides call. Kulusevski was substituted for Alvaro Morata in the 84’.
Cristiano Ronaldo - 7
Ronaldo made efforts early in the match to rectify the San Siro scoring drought; creating for himself before taking a shot wide of the goal in the first 6’. Ronaldo took another arcing shot from deep that swung just outside of the goal in the 40’. The efforts finally paid off as the Portugese striker delivered a phenomenal shot in the box past Ospina for the goal in the 64’. Ronaldo attempted to seal the win with a second goal in the 89’, but was blocked by the keeper. Cristiano Ronaldo contributed one goal, one shot on target, two shots off target, three shots blocked, three successful dribbles, six ground duels won, one aerial duel won, three offsides calls, one clearance, one blocked shot, and one tackle. Ronaldo was penalized with a yellow card for a foul in the 74’.
Federico Bernardeschi (↔️ Federico Chiesa) - 6
Federico Bernardeschi entered the match at halftime following a Chiesa ankle injury. Bernardeschi has seen growth under the tutelage of Andrea Pirlo and as of late has become a reliable replacement for The Old Lady. Bernardeschi contributed one shot on target, one big chance missed, two accurate long balls, three ground duels won, two tackles, and one offsides call.
Adrien Rabiot (↔️ Rodrigo Bentancur) - N/A
Not enough information for rating.
Alvaro Morata (↔️ Dejan Kulusevski) - 7
Originally, there was not enough information to give Morata a rating, but the man sealed the win to make it a 2-0 victory and we are 2020/21 Supercoppa Champions!
Andrea Pirlo - 7
Il Maestro put together the first starting lineup (minus COVID positive/injured players) that I had no qualms with. Starting McKennie and Arthur in the midfield is a necessity and it is time to cut the cord with the commitment to Rabiot, Ramsey, and even Bentancur. Pirlo wins his first trophy as the manager of Juventus, defeating his old friend Genaro Gattuso. Grande Andrea!
Follow Justin Soforo on Twitter @JustinSoforo