“Ronaldo Would Play Only in Champions League,” Says Bonucci

After partially getting the day off against Lazio, Cristiano Ronaldo will lead Juventus’ attack in Tuesday’s return leg of the Champions League bout with Porto. Leonardo Bonucci stated in the pre-game presser: “He is always pumped in for this kind of matches. From his interview you can gather that he would play only in Champions League if possible, so we can all understand his eagerness.”

Coach Andrea Pirlo underlined the importance of the game: “It will be like a final for us, but so it will be for our opponents. Everything is open after the first leg, we must be lucid. It is a decisive match for our Champions League journey, but I do not think my future will hinge on its result. I work every day with the knowledge of what our plans are.”

The manager also discussed Ronaldo: “He is re-energized, these are his matches and he has always proven it over the years. He got to rest over the last few days, we programmed his practice sessions after the Spezia contest and he followed the plan serenely. He is looking forward to facing Porto.”

As for the starting lineup, he added: “There will be no surprises, I do not like being a magician. If I can, I put every player in his natural roles.”

Juventus are set to welcome back Giorgio Chiellini after three weeks on the shelf, while Matthijs De Ligt remains in doubt because of a sore calf and mostly practiced on the side Monday. Danilo is suspended due to yellow-card accumulation. The gaffer hinted that Arthur and Bonucci will start.