Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo has been ruled out of Sunday’s Serie A game against Champions League rivals Atalanta with a flexor muscle issue.
Coach Andrea Pirlo said the 36-year-old Portuguese striker, the top scorer in Serie A this season with 25 goals, would rest to avoid risking a more serious injury.
“We have an important absentee. Unfortunately, Cristiano will not be taking part in the match due to a problem with his flexor,” Pirlo told a pre-match press conference.
“Over these past few days, he has not been able to recover from the problem sustained after last Sunday’s match against Genoa.
“He hasn’t been able to push himself this week. It would be too risky for us to bring him to Bergamo tomorrow.
“We have decided to leave him in Turin to rest and we will try to have him back for Wednesday’s match against Parma.”
Champions Juventus are third, 12 points off leaders Inter Milan, with their nine-year reign looking set to end.
They play fourth-placed Atalanta who are just a point behind, with next week’s game at relegation-threatened Parma. Pirlo blamed the five-time Ballon d’Or winner’s problem on fatigue. (Punch)