Marcelo Provides Update on Future Amid Links of Potential Reunion With Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus

​Marcelo has insisted that he has no plans to leave Real Madrid this summer, despite growing reports linking him with a potential reunion with Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus.

The Brazil international has found his first-team opportunities this season at the Bernabeu harder to come by, with 22-year-old left-back Sergio Reguilon emerging onto the scene.

Marcelo

However, with the return of Zinedine Zidane as manager, ​Marcelo has once again found himself back in favour, and revealed that noises of his potential departure were simply rumours.

He told ​beIN SPORTS: “Everyone knows the happiness I have, and I show that every day training or playing, wearing this shirt.

“There are so many things that are said from outside, I think. I don’t think about that. ​Madrid is my home, and those who know me know the truth.”

Marcelo

Having joined from hometown side Fluminense in 2007, Marcelo was hailed as the successor to Real legend Roberto Carlos, and has since featured 482 times for the club, scoring 36 goals in the process.

The 30-year-old has won the league on four separate occasions and was a key member of the record-breaking side that won the Champions League four times over a period of five years.

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But in a disappointing campaign this year, Los Blancos find themselves out of contention for ​La Liga with five games to play, and are already out of both the Copa del Rey and the Champions League respectively.

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Serie A Release Statement Concerning ‘Unacceptable’ Incidents of Racial Abuse in Italian Football

Serie A has branded recent incidents of racial abuse in Italian football as ‘unacceptable’ and have vowed to do everything in their power to prevent any future episodes.

Inter received a two-match stadium ban earlier in the season after monkey chants were directed towards Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly and the Nerazzurri have been charged with two more instances of racial abuse since. Juventus players Moise Kean and Blaise Matuidi were also subject to abuse from Cagliari supporters at the start of April, but no punishments have been handed out.

A spokesperson for ​Serie A has commented on the matter, saying (via ​ESPN): “Lega Serie A strongly condemns the racist episodes and the spreading of discriminatory chanting and violent images on social media as has occurred in these past few days.

“Sport should herald respect, inclusion and the togetherness in harmony — values which are at the base of the social initiatives Lega Serie A has always promoted.”

Critics, such as the organisation ​Kick It Out​, have suggested that Italian football doesn’t take the matter seriously enough and current punishments are far from suitable.

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The spokesperson for Serie A claimed that the league is doing its best to rectify this and assured that everything will be done to kick racism out of Italian football.

“It is not acceptable to hear intolerant, verbal attacks in our stadiums and, like in the past, with recent modifications to the Sporting Justice code, thanks to the work from Lega Serie A and the FIGC, we will do everything in our power to supervise and prevent any similar incidents.”

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Massimiliano Allegri & Cristiano Ronaldo Respond to Rumours of Summer Exit From Juventus

Massimiliano Allegri has insisted Cristiano Ronaldo is ‘the future of Juventus’ after rumours of a possible exit from the club arose following their Champions League failings.

Despite taking a 1-1 draw away from the first leg in Ajax, the Bianconeri fell to a 2-1 home defeat in the second leg to knock the Serie A side out at the quarter-final stage.

​Ronaldo scored both of ​Juventus‘ goals in the tie, however their disappointing exit resulted in speculation mounting that the Portuguese star would look to leave the club in the summer. However, such discussions were quickly put to bed by Allegri, who confessed their star player is as disappointed as the rest of the team regarding their Champions League exit.

“Ronaldo is the future of Juventus,” he said (via ​Marca).

“He is an extraordinary player who has had a great season and he’ll have a great one next year. He is relaxed, even though he is disappointed like we all are. We’ve exited a competition we thought we could win.”

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Juventus wrapped up the ​Serie A title on Saturday with a comeback victory over Fiorentina, and in doing so the Turin club became the first team in Serie A, La Liga, Bundesliga, Ligue 1 or the Premier League history to win eight consecutive league titles.

Furthermore, in securing the crown, Ronaldo became the first ever player to win the league title in England, Spain and Italy.

Regardless of their domestic success, there was still major disappointment surrounding their exit from Europe’s biggest club competition, having been backed by many as favourites to lift the crown this season. However, it seems as though the player himself has sought to put an end to speculation about an exit, with his focus solely on Juventus.

“For me, there is only Juventus,” Ronaldo is quoted as saying in Tuttosport, as per ​Calcio Mercato.

Despite securing the title, the Old Lady still have five matches left to play in the league, with a trip to face Inter on the cards next Saturday.

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Massimiliano Allegri Hails His Juve Players After Winning Historic Eighth Successive Scudetto

​Massimiliano Allegri has hailed his Juventus players after they secured the club’s eighth successive Serie A title with a 2-1 win over Fiorentina at the Allianz Stadium.

After failing to clinch the title in their last game following a shock 2-1 defeat to SPAL it looked as though Fiorentina were also set on spoiling Juve’s celebrations when Nikola Milenkovic struck from close range after just six minutes. 

The home side were frustrated for large parts of the game as they went in search of an equaliser, but they eventually found it courtesy of an Alex Sandro glancing header on the stroke of half time. 

The win was then secured when Fiorentina captain German Pezzalla put the ball into his own net at the start of the second half to help ​Juve to a ​2-1 win and to the ​Serie A title with five games to spare.

Speaking with the club’s ​official website after the game, Allegri heaped the praise on his players after their historic campaign and even highlighted the club’s 1-0 win away at Bologna as the key moment in their season. He said: “I’m very pleased, it’s a big achievement. 

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“Winning our eighth Scudetto with five games to spare shows the significance of what we’ve done. In previous seasons, we’ve had some dips in form but this year, given the fixture list, we really had to press on the accelerator. 

“The decisive game was against Bologna following the loss in Madrid, when we had back-to-back away games, first at Bologna and then at Napoli.”

It had been a tough week for Juve fans to endure having lost to SPAL before being dumped out of the Champions League at home by Ajax on Tuesday night, but the title win has put smiles back on their faces and the club can now afford to reflect on and celebrate what has been a historic season in Turin. 

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Juventus 2-1 Fiorentina: Report, Ratings & Reaction as Bianconeri Win Eighth Successive Scudetto

​Juventus secured their eighth successive Serie A title with five games to spare as they ran out 2-1 winners over Fiorentina at the Allianz Stadium.

Juventus squandered their chances to win the title in their last game as they fell to a 2-1 defeat to SPAL, and it looked as though they were on their way to doing the same when they fell behind after just five minutes courtesy of Nikola Milenkovic’s close range strike.

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The home side pressed for an equaliser and were frustrated for much of the first half, but finally got back on level terms after the half hour mark with Alex Sandro getting a glancing header on the end of Miralem Pjanic’s corner which crept past the goalkeeper.

Coming out for the second half ​Juve were in control and got themselves in front less than 10 minutes after the restart when Fiorentina captain German Pezzella put the ball into his own net, and in the end that was all that was needed to secure a 2-1 win and the league title for Juventus.


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Key Talking Point

Having lost back-to-back games against SPAL and Ajax in their previous two matches, Massimiliano Allegri would’ve been desperate for his side to wrap the title up on Saturday.

Juve certainly weren’t at their best and struggled for large parts of the game to create any clear-cut opportunities, but they did just about enough to get the win against a stern Fiorentina side and secure their eighth successive Scudetto.

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It brings a positive end to what has been a torrid week for the football club with their European dreams ending abruptly, although they can at least celebrate tonight after what has been a dominant ​Serie A season for the Bianconeri.


Player Ratings

Starting XI: Szczesny (6); Cancelo (7), Rugani (6), Bonucci (6), Sandro (8); Can (7), Pjanic (7), Matuidi (6); Cuadrado (6), Ronaldo (7), Bernardeschi (6). 

Substitutes: Bentancur (7), Kean (6), De Sciglio (N/A). 

STAR MAN – It wasn’t a classic Juventus performance, but Sandro can certainly be happy with his contribution on the day.

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He proved to be a nuisance all afternoon down the left hand side for Juve and even managed to get his name on the scoresheet when he headed home for the equaliser. It set his side up to go on and win the game, and Sandro will be a happy man after a top performance.


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Player Ratings

Starting XI: Lafont (6); Milenkovic (7), Pezzalla (5), Ceccherini (6), Hancko (6); Benassi (6), Veretout (5), Dabo (6); Mirallas (6), Simeone (5), Chiesa (7). 

Substitutes: Muriel (6), Gerson (6), Fernandez (6). 


Looking Ahead

Now that Juve have wrapped up the title they can afford to celebrate, although they will still want to wrap up their league campaign in style starting with a tough trip to the San Siro to face Inter on Saturday night.

As for Fiorentina they’ve now gone 10 games in all competitions without a win, and they’ll be desperate to break their winless streak when they travel to face Atalanta in the second leg of their Coppa Italia semi-final on Thursday night.

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