Juventus boss Andrea Pirlo made the bold decision to substitute Cristiano Ronaldo during Saturday’s win over Inter Milan while Juve were chasing the game, but insists the forward didn’t mind.
Ronaldo was hooked on the 70 minute mark for Alvaro Morata with Juve drawing 2-2 in the must-win game.
The Turin side are struggling in their bid for a top-four finish, which is now out of their hands after Napoli’s win over Fiorentina.
On Saturday, they faced the newly-crowned champions, Antonio Conte’s Inter, and seemed destined to settle for a draw before a late winner from Juan Cuadrado.
In an attempt to get a result, Pirlo took the decision to bring Ronaldo off for Morata.
The Portuguese forward didn’t seem too happy with the decision as he trudged off the pitch, and is rarely happy to be substituted.
But Pirlo insisted that Ronaldo was fine with the decision, and was adamant that the substitution worked well.
“I think it was the first time he was happy to be subbed off,” he said.
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“We were one man down, and he’d have been chasing shadows.
“He was happy and smiling in the changing room.”
The win helped to slightly ease the pressure on Pirlo, who could well be let go at the end of what has been a dire campaign for the club.
But speaking after the game, the former midfielder was in no mood to discuss the possibility of him being sacked.
“I haven’t thought about it,” he said.
“I was only focused on today’s game. We’ll talk about the future later on.”