Juventus ended 2021 on a high with a 2-0 win over Cagliari on Tuesday taking them back into contention for a top-four spot in Serie A.

Goals from Moise Kean and Federico Bernardeschi helped Massimiliano Allegri’s Juventus romp home to a comfortable 2-0 victory over Cagliari at the Allianz Stadium on Tuesday. The win takes the Bianconeri up to the fifth spot on the Serie A table, four points shy of fourth-placed Atalanta. It represents a positive end to the year for the Old Lady, who have endured a difficult 2021.

Juventus started the game well but had to wait until the 40th minute to break the deadlock. Moise Kean was the man of the moment as he guided in a header to send the home side in front at the break.

Cagliari, to their credit, did cause Juventus problems and created two excellent opportunities in the second half. The Bianconeri held on and doubled their lead courtesy of a Federico Bernardeschi strike in the 83rd minute.

The goal all but settled the game and helped the Turin giants continue their rise up the Serie A standings. The Hard Tackle now takes a look at how Massimiliano Allegri’s men fared on the night following their win over Cagliari.

Wojciech Szczesny: 7/10

Szczesny played a key role in ensuring that the home side held onto their one-goal lead in the second half until Federico Bernardeschi scored. In particular, his save to deny Joao Pedro stood out as a fine piece of shot-stopping. The Polish international had little to otherwise but deserves credit for being alert and dependable when called upon.

Juan Cuadrado: 4/10

Cuadrado has been one of Juventus’s most consistent players this season and looked to be on the way to yet another good performance with a fine start. However, it proved to be a faux pas as the Colombian struggled to make an impact as the match wore on. His deliveries from the right flank and set-pieces were sub-par and defensive mistakes almost cost dearly. Juventus will hope that he is back to his dependable best in the new year.

Leonardo Bonucci: 6/10

Bonucci skippered the home side on the night and organised his backline well. The Italian international was calm, composed and responded to danger well. Juventus enjoyed the lion’s share of the possession, and it made his job all the easier.

Matthijs de Ligt: 6/10

The Dutch ace continued his fine vein of performance with a no-prisoners-taken approach on the night. He responded well to Cagliari bringing on Leonardo Pavoletti in the second half. The 33-year-old did pose a challenge, but de Ligt, to his credit responded in kind.

Alex Sandro: 6/10

The Brazilian was solid if unspectacular on the night and held his own against admittedly inferior opponents. Cagliari preferred to attack down their flank, and thankfully for Juventus, Sandro was alert to the danger. Raoul Bellanova did get the better of the Bianconeri left-back on some occasions but could not make that advantage count.

Rodrigo Bentancur: 6/10

The Uruguayan international worked his socks off and ensured that his side retained possession in the middle of the park. While Bentancur was defensively solid, there was little to no input from him going forward.

Arthur Melo: 5/10

The former Barcelona star did not do much wrong but did little to stand out. Arthur passed the ball well and hardly lost possession. However, it counted for little as the Brazilian could not make it count at either end of the pitch.

Adrien Rabiot: 4/10

Rabiot’s poor run of form continues, and despite enjoying a good start, he did little to build upon the promise. His touch often let him down, and the Frenchman was rightfully taken off for the more dynamic Weston McKennie at half-time.

Federico Bernardeschi: 7/10

The Italian winger appears to be hitting form at just the right time. Bernardeschi impressed at the weekend against Bologna and continued that fine form into the game against Cagliari. Bernardeschi got lucky with his assist for Kean’s opener.

However, he set tongues wagging with an excellent strike in the 83rd minute to secure all three points for Juventus. Bernardeschi was the standout player for Juventus on the night and did not give an inch to the opposition at either end of the pitch.

Alvaro Morata: 6/10

The Spaniard might not have gotten on the scoresheet this time, but he linked up well with his teammates and helped Juventus fashion several opportunities. The goals will come as long as Morata continues to put in such performances.

Moise Kean: 7/10

A much improved outing for the youngster who had looked lost for ideas against Bologna. Kean hit the post early on before reacting well to Bernardeschi’s pass to give his side the lead in the 40th minute. A step in the right direction.

SUBSTITUTES

Weston McKennie: 6/10

The American was an upgrade over Rabiot and increased Juventus’s tempo when in possession. McKennie also linked up with his teammates well and did not shy away from a challenge. If anything, he gave a timely reminder of why he should start over Rabiot in the upcoming games.

Dejan Kulusevski: 6/10

After being brought on, the Swedish wide man was up for the game and made a telling difference. Kulusevski’s effort to steal the ball and feed Bernardeschi for the second goal gave his side breathing space in the game’s final minutes. Allegri will be glad to see all of his wingers step up in the absence of Federico Chiesa.

Manuel Locatelli: N/A

The Italian international replaced Arthur in the 83rd minute right before Bernardeschi scored. Locatelli had little time to make an impact but looked tidy in possession.

Mattia De Sciglio: N/A

De Sciglio came on late for Bernardeschi as Juventus sought to see out the game.

Kaio Jorge: N/A

Jorge replaced the industrious late on Alvaro Morata as Juventus sought to whittle down the minutes.

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