Football

Juventus open seven-point gap as Ronaldo scores from free-kick

Cristiano Ronaldo finally scored from a free-kick for Juventus and goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon made a record 648th Serie A appearance as the league leaders beat neighbours Torino 4-1 on Saturday.

Ronaldo curled his shot over the wall and into the corner to put Torino 3-1 ahead in the 61st minute, his first goal in 43 free-kick attempts with Juventus.

The win helped the defending champions go seven points clear of second-placed Lazio, who lost 3-0 to AC Milan, during which Zlatan Ibrahimovic converted a penalty.

Juventus led through goals from Paulo Dybala and Juan Cuadrado before the visitors replied from a Andrea Belotti penalty after Matthijs de Ligt was penalised for handball by the video assistant referee.

NERVOUS

"Maybe we thought it was going to be easy, but the penalty got us nervous and made us lose control of the game," said Juventus coach Maurizio Sarri.

"We had a confusing phase at the start of the second half and then, when the two teams were tired, our quality came out."

Ronaldo then bagged his 25th league goal of the season before Torino substitute Koffi Djidji turned a Douglas Costa cross into his own net.

Buffon, 42, has now overtaken Paolo Maldini's Serie A appearance record. - REUTERS

Football