To everybody who was freaking out that Cristiano Ronaldo could miss his return to Old Trafford because of his red card against Valencia: R-E-L-A-X.
UEFA announced on Thursday that Ronaldo will only miss one game — Juventus’ game against Swiss side Young Boys at Allianz Stadium next Tuesday night — in the aftermath of his sending off in Spain last week. That means he will be available for selection to manager Max Allegri when Juventus travel to England to face Ronaldo’s former club, Manchester United, on Tuesday, Oct. 23, in the first Champions League group stage game following the October international break.
So, what could have been a two-game suspension is now a one-game suspension...
Should we call this an about face from UEFA?
Either way, the red card shown to Ronaldo by referee Felix Brych was anything but convincing. And, obviously in UEFA’s mind, it wasn’t convincing enough to hand out the full two-game ban that people were immediately fearing in the minutes and hours after Ronaldo got sent off.
Of course it’s a good thing that Ronaldo will miss the game against what everybody is expecting to be the team that finishes in last place in Group H. And knowing who else Juventus has in attack these days — the likes of Paulo Dybala, Federico Bernardeschi and Douglas Costa — it’s not like Allegri will be struggling for options just because his new No. 7 is going to be watching from the tribuna for the first time as a Juve player.
This will be fine. Everything will be fine.
UEFA got this one right — and that’s definitely more than I can say about Brych’s original call on the field eight days ago.