Juventus kept their top-four hopes alive with a 3-1 win over Sassuolo at the Mapei Stadium in Serie A on Wednesday.
Despite being under pressure for much of the game, they found themselves 2-0 up at half time with goals from Adrien Rabiot and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Giacomo Raspadori pulled one back for Sassuolo in the second half, but Paolo Dybala secured the points for Juve with 25 minutes to play.
After a blistering start, Sassuolo found themselves with a penalty after 15 minutes. Rabiot foolishly gave the ball away in the box, which led to Leonardo Bonucci bringing Raspadori down. Domenico Berardi stepped up but saw his shot saved by the outgoing Gianluigi Buffon.
Somewhat against the run of play, Rabiot redeemed himself after his earlier error by giving Juve the lead. He was given time and space as he dribbled towards the 18-yard-box and placed a low shot in off the base of the post.
Once again Sassuolo were getting closer and closer to scoring, but then found themselves 2-0 down on the stroke of half time. Ronaldo had only Marlon to beat, and he calmly slotted into the bottom corner to net his 100th Juventus goal. It also made him the first player to score 100 goals or more in three different countries.
Just before the hour mark, Sassuolo deservedly pulled a goal back. Raspadori played a delightful one-two with Manuel Locatelli, and then calmly slotted the ball past Buffon. It was nothing more than Raspadori deserved, who had been dangerous throughout.
It only took five minutes for Juve to restore their two-goal cushion. An excellent Dejan Kulusevski pass put Dybala through, who expertly dinked the ball over the on-rushing Andrea Consigli. That goal meant the Argentine joins Ronaldo on 100 goals for the Bianconeri.
Every win is massive for Juve in their pursuit for the top four, but with Napoli, Atalanta, and Milan all recording victories in this round of fixtures, they haven’t made up any ground. Andrea Pirlo’s side remain fifth, one point behind Napoli.
For Sassuolo, their fight for seventh place and participation in the European Conference League goes on.