Joao Felix, Atletico Madrid Beat Cristiano Ronaldo, Juventus in ICC Friendly

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistAugust 10, 2019

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN - AUGUST 10:  Joao Felix of Atletico Madrid reacts to Cristiano Ronaldo of Juventus after scoring a goal to make the score 1-0  during the International Champions Cup match between Atletico Madrid and Juventus on August 10, 2019 in Stockholm, Sweden. (Photo by Denis Doyle/International Champions Cup/Getty Images)
Denis Doyle/International Champions Cup/Getty Images

Juventus and Atletico Madrid wrapped up their pre-season preparations on Saturday in their final 2019 International Champions Cup outing, a 2-1 win for Atletico. Joao Felix was the standout with a goal and assist.

The Spaniards took the lead after 24 minutes when Thomas Lemar deflected Felix's effort past goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny, and the youngster restored the lead later in the first half. Sami Khedira had equalised for Juventus.

The Rojiblancos will start their La Liga campaign on August 18 when they face Getafe. The Bianconeri's Serie A's title defence will kick off on August 24 against Parma.

The friendly got off to a slow start, with Atletico controlling the ball early and Juventus content to sit back. Douglas Costa showed his quick feet on a few occasions, and Cristiano Ronaldo joined in on the fun:

International Champions Cup @IntChampionsCup

Sheeesh 🔥 @Cristiano loves to put on a show for the fans! https://t.co/plob6BwNnw

Chances were rare, however. Giorgio Chiellini was the first to go close after a corner made its way to him, but Jan Oblak produced a fine save to deny his volley.

The Bianconeri gradually took control as the half wore on, but a good spell from Atletico saw Koke's shot get turned off the line by Costa, before Felix and Lemar combined for the opener.

Felix reacted quickest after a cross from Kieran Trippier, and the ball took a deflection off Lemar. It was unclear who would be credited with the goal, but the Rojiblancos hardly cared.

Atletico couldn't enjoy their lead for very long, however. Just five minutes after the opener, Khedira deservedly fired home the equaliser, leaving Oblak no chance.

But Felix wasn't done. Four minutes after the equaliser, he perfectly timed his run in behind Matthijs de Ligt and produced a fine first-time finish to Lemar's pass that restored the lead.

One Juventus fan was impressed by the former Benfica prospect:

Around Turin @AroundTurin

Can we do a standing ovation for Joao Felix? 🤪

Juventus ended the half on top, but tame shots from Gonzalo Higuain and Adrien Rabiot didn't threaten Oblak's goal.

The Bianconeri nearly started the second half with a bang, and once again, Costa was involved. The Brazilian hit the post after his shot took a deflection.

Higuain also went close, narrowly missing the target after smart buildup play, and Rabiot struck the post with a great shot himself. 

Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo heads the ball over Atletico Madrid's Kieran Trippier during the International Champions Cup football match between Atletico Madrid v Juventus on August 10, 2019 in Solna outside Stockholm, Sweden. (Photo by Erik SIMANDER / TT

Juventus' momentum soon subsided, with both teams making a multitude of substitutions. Paulo Dybala appeared the most eager to impress off the bench, twice putting Oblak to work with strong efforts.

The Italians pushed hardest for a late goal, but Oblak once again denied Dybala a goal with a great save. 

Juventus will return to Italy for their annual Villar Perosa showcase on Wednesday. Even though the Bianconeri showed promise against Atletico, there's plenty of work to be done before the Serie A season opens. They didn't win a single ICC match in regulation.

Atletico were unbeaten in pre-season and appear ready to start their La Liga campaign on the right foot.


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