Ronaldo tests positive for coronavirus again and will therefore miss Barcelona clash / How Juventus have set up without the Portuguese

Ronaldo tests positive for coronavirus again and will therefore miss Barcelona clash / How Juventus have set up without the Portuguese

Not so positive

Cristiano Ronaldo has tested positive for Covid-19 once again, and is therefore expected to be unavailable for Juventus’ game against Barcelona. Having tested positive for the virus a week ago, there had been hope that the Portuguese would recover in time to face Lionel Messi’s Barca.

This now appears all but impossible. According to the most recent reports, though, despite this, the ‘viral load showed very low values.’ Juventus will hope that a new test can be carried out 48 hours prior to next Wednesday’s clash.

The last time that Ronaldo and Messi faced each other in the Champions League was back in 2011. Messi’s famous run after Pepe had been sent off at the Bernabeu put Barca in control of the tie. A 1-1 draw at the Camp Nou sent them to the final.

Fans had been yearning for a reunion ever since Ronaldo left La Liga to join Serie A champions Juve. But they may need to wait until the clubs reconvene in several weeks’ time for the reverse fixture.

What now?

With Ronaldo out, Andrea Pirlo faces a difficult selection decision. The Italians have tried two different attacking combinations in the absence of their star man. In the disappointing 1-1 draw at Crotone, Alvaro Morata was supported by youngsters Dejan Kulusevski and, to a lesser extent, Manolo Portanova.

More recently, a 2-0 win over Dynamo Kyiv saw Aaron Ramsey play in behind Morata, with Kulusevski and Federico Chiesa out wide. Pirlo also has the option of Paulo Dybala, in addition to Federico Bernardeschi.

Whatever the Italian chooses, the gulf in quality without Ronaldo is huge. With Barcelona’s attacking frame of Messi, Ansu Fati and Phillipe Coutinho taking shape, Juve could be caught out.

Whatever the selection, though, the two top sides in the group will hopefully put on one of the clashes of the tournament.

See also: Cristiano Ronaldo returns positive coronavirus test as questions grow as to whether the international break should have taken place

UEFA will reportedly allow Ronaldo to face Barcelona if Juventus forward can prove ‘he has a very low viral load’


This article was edited by Conor Laird.