Matthijs de Ligt had a match to forget for his new club, which persevered on PKs in the ICC in China.

By 90Min
July 24, 2019

Juventus narrowly defeated Inter on penalties after Matthijs de Ligt's own goal and Cristiano Ronaldo's deflected free kick ensured the score ended level after 90 minutes on a humid Wednesday evening in China.

Inter looked at ease for much of the first half as Juve failed to make any inroads on Antonio Conte's defense. its confidence on the ball and wide play proved too much for La Vecchia Signora as De Ligt scored an own goal from a corner just 10 minutes in.

A deflected Ronaldo free kick meant the match ended level and, as per the rules of the International Champions Cup, it went to penalties.

Inter looked extremely uncomfortable as Gianluigi Buffon commanded the shootout like days of old, but misses from Adrien Rabiot and Federico Bernardeschi took it to sudden death, and eventually it was young center back Merih Demiral who won the match for Juve, 4-3 in the shootout.


Key Talking Point

It really was a day to forget for De Ligt, who was making his first start for the Turin side. 

There had been a huge build-up for the 19-year-old, who signed from Ajax for just under £70m earlier in July. However, the early goal ensured the Dutchman will want to put the match swiftly behind him.

To make matters worse for the defender, De Ligt was replaced at halftime by Demiral, another youngster signed during the current transfer window from fellow Serie A side Sassuolo, who would eventually go on to win the match for Maurizio Sarri's side. 

Player Ratings

Starting XI: Szczesny (6); De Sciglio (6), De Ligt (5), Bonucci (6), Cancelo (6); Pjanic (6), Matuidi (6), Rabiot (6); Bernardeschi (7), Higuain (6), Ronaldo (7).

Substitutes: Buffon (7), Demiral (7), Mandzukic (6), Can (6), Rugani (6), Muratore (6).

Star Man 

None of the players wearing black and white truly made their mark on the match. 

However, Ronaldo showed glimpses of what he could do and even a fraction of the Portuguese star's quality is enough to change the course of a match. The 34-year-old's free kick brought his side level and he showed off plenty of his skills for the crowd to cheer at.

Inter Milan

Key Talking Point

It's no secret that Conte has long been on the hunt for Manchester United's Romelu Lukaku, making Mauro Icardi redundant in his plans. However, with the deal not yet done, there was another chance for Ivan Perisic to stake a claim for first-team football.

Perisic did well in the first half, making darting runs that new signing Stefano Sensi looked for at every opportunity. However, Inter slowed up after halftime and the Croatian didn't see much of the ball.

He could end up playing alongside Belgian striker Lukaku if he can convince Conte of his quality and if the deal does take place over the summer.

Player Ratings

Starting XI: Handanovic (6); Skriniar (6), De Vrij (6), D'Ambrosio (7); Dalbert (6), Sensi (8), Brozovic (6), Gagliardini (7), Candreva (7); Perisic (7), Esposito (6). 

Substitutes: Padelli (7), Longo (6), Barella (6), Mario (6), Valero (6), Bastoni (6), Puscas (6), Ranocchia (5), Agoume (N/A).

Star Man 

Stefano Sensi looked like a real handful until he came off in the 78th minute. The central midfielder, who is on loan from Sassuolo, created an abundance of chances for the Inter wingbacks to latch onto and also involved Perisic in the game further up the field.

Looking Ahead

Juve will be focused on getting its heads around 'Sarri-ball' and the next International Champions Cup match against Atletico Madrid will provide another chance to do so.

As for Inter, Conte has a tough few matches coming up against Tottenham, Paris Saint-Germain, and Valencia, and will be hoping for a similar performance–along with the arrival of Lukaku, if the club can come to terms with Man United on a transfer.

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