By Tim Stannard
CR7 cites extensive knowledge of own body to declare himself winner in fitness race for Ajax Champions League clash
One of the key components of Juventus winning the Champions League is the notion that Cristiano Ronaldo is going to be there to help the team along the way / do all the work himself. That's largely how matters went in the epic Last 16 encounter with Atletico Madrid.
However, a muscle strain to the footballer picked up on international duty for Portugal on Monday sees an official RACE AGAINST TIME for Ronaldo to be ready for a quarterfinal first-leg clash against Ajax in Amsterdam on Wednesday April 10th. That's two weeks and one day away.
The 34-year-old felt iffy running for the ball and being subbed out of a 1-1 draw with Serbia after half-an-hour.
"I'm not worried about this, I l know my body," was the nonchalant 'tis but a scratch' vibe from Ronaldo to reporters after the game and, to be fair, few people in this universe know their own body in such detail as CR7.
The setback saw Ronaldo having a Messi of an international week - a rubbish time with one's country ruining a perfectly good club situation. In Portugal's case, the country has started nice and early in its traditional pastime of stuffing up basic-looking qualification processes with Portugal third in its group with two points from two. And behind Luxembourg. Let that sink in, eh.
The Sports Burst live show will look at whether Juve fans should be concerned. Just head to our Facebook page at 12PM ET / 9AM PT or watch back at your leisure.
Messi assured of Copa America spot for Argentina in good news / bad news announcement
Speaking of having a 'Messi' of an international week, Ronaldo's shadow-partner of destiny Leo also suffered a muscle meltdown which sees the footballer missing out on his country's clash against Morocco on Tuesday. Which Sports Burst is sure that he is very upset about.
The good news / bad news for the Barcelona man is that Argentina coach - at least for the moment - Lionel Scaloni announced on Monday that Messi will still be part of the soon-to-be-announced Copa America squad, despite just one game being played for the country by the footballer since the World Cup.
On to more immediate matters and Paulo Dybala is set to take Messi's place in a clash against a dangerous Morocco side that could go south as quickly as a jet-powered migrating whimbrel as Friday's friendly loss against Venezuela.
Watch the madness unfold as Argentina takes on Morocco live on beIN SPORTS at 2:50PM ET / 11:50AM. And catch up with all the reaction from Kevin Egan and Ray Hudson after the match on Post to Post: the soccer show which is live on our beIN SPORTS Facebook page at 5:30PM ET / 2:30PM.
Italy Kean on more goals as USMNT faces Chile reception
The Euro 2020 qualifiers also continue on Tuesday in a final batch of matches of the international break.
The biggest cheeses in action are Italy with the country still giddy from finding one of their players who can actually score goals. That player is Juve's 19-year-old Moise Kean who became the second youngest ever Italy goalscorer last week and should start against Liechtenstein.
Matchday in Houston.— U.S. Soccer MNT (@USMNT) March 26, 2019
United as one, tonight we take on 🇨🇱. pic.twitter.com/ItTcHSgnV6
Over on this side of the The Pond and the officially-titled 'New Look' USA is back in action and still chirpy after a deflected goal win against Ecuador last week. The USMNT will be hoping for better luck in front of goal with some red-hot peppering of Chile in Houston.
Mexico is also in action on US soil with a friendly clash against Paraguay in Santa Clara.