Serie A Top Perfomers – UCL Road Game vs Barcelona

Juventus pulled off the upset and exacted revenge on a shell-shocked Barcelona, snatching the first spot in their Champions League group thanks to their best performance of the season.

Gianluigi Buffon: everybody needs to do their part to keep a clean sheet at Camp Nou and any defender could have been deserving of the nod. Leonardo Bonucci almost put the nail in the coffin late and was quietly impressive, while Danilo and Matthijs De Ligt were extremely aggressive in the duels, also far away from their own box, which often set the tone. But the shout-out goes to the ageless wonder, who was given a maybe final spotlight by coach and answered the bell whenever he was called into action, in particular on the numerous sharp attempts by Lionel Messi.

Weston McKennie: another splendid and monumental goal on a well-timed cut for the young American, who is quickly climbing the hierarchies in the midfield. The whole action was spot on, as he did not force a shot from outside the box when had the opportunity to do so, dished it to Juan Cuadrado that then found him in the middle of the box with a soft cross that just needed to be tucked home, which he did in style. Besides that, he brought the juice in both phases all night long. Arthur looked good in his old stomping ground and in general has fared well when facing sides that did not pressed a lot. Cuadrado made it to the stat-sheet again with an assist, while Aaron Ramsey had some nifty passes and seemed sprier than the last tilts. Adrien Rabiot and Rodrigo Bentancur maintained the level of energy coming off the bench.

Cristiano Ronaldo: he had surely circled this game on the calendar after being forced to miss the first bout with his rival and he bested him thanks to two clinical penalty kicks. He contributed to the other goal with a sneaky movement that pulled two centre-backs away from action, opening a big alley for McKennie and in the final minutes he was even seen tracking back to strip Messi near his box. An all-around great effort for the Portuguese ace. Alvaro Morata worked hard to keep his teammates connected with his quality distribution and run like a gazelle on the counter whenever he had the chance to. He has quickly mastered the art of playing alongside, but also off of, his very cumbersome partner up front.

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