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Why Ronaldo Fans Shouldn't Worry

Although his form since football returned in Italy has not been great, here is why Cristiano Ronaldo fans should not worry about the five-time Ballon d'Or winner being finished as a top-level striker.

Click through the mini-gallery above to see the top five goalscorers in Serie A so far this season.

Before lockdown, the Portuguese forward found his most lethal touch in Italy, scoring in 11 consecutive league matches on a run that saw him notch 16 goals. That was the best form Ronaldo had been in since his big-money move from Real Madrid, but when football in Italy resumed this month, the striker appeared a shadow of his former self.

Videos of the 35-year-old misplacing passes and shooting far off target did the rounds on social media following his first match back, a Coppa Italia tie against AC Milan, during which he also missed a penalty.

Ronaldo then followed that performance up with a poor showing against Napoli in the final of the cup competition, which Juventus lost 4-2 on penalties. The ex-Manchester United man came in for further criticism for not stepping up to take a spot-kick earlier, with many assuming he wanted to take the fifth penalty in the shootout.

While his form is certainly worrying, and has even been discussed by some high-profile former professionals such as Alessandro Del Piero and Luca Toni, perhaps we need to look at how Ronaldo has fared off the back of a break in recent seasons, and even in this one.

Before his rich vein of goalscoring form from December 2019 to March this year, Ronaldo struck just five times in 10 Serie A games. While that is a healthy return, it was more his performances in that period that worried his fans.

Last season, the Portugal skipper also got off to a relatively slow start in Serie A, finding the net on just three occasions in his first seven league appearances for Juve. Going even further back to his final campaign at Real, Ronaldo had scored just four LaLiga goals by mid-January.

This pattern might suggest that, with age, Ronaldo has become a slow starter, although this has barely impacted his final output by the end of a campaign as he usually peaks around February, March, April and May.

It is an entirely different situation this time out, with lockdown having enforced major changes to the layout of the season, but Juventus supporters and Ronaldo fans should definitely look forward to when the UEFA Champions League returns in August.

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There is no player in the world who loves the big stage more than Ronaldo does, and with 11 league games remaining for the forward to rediscover his best form and get his eye in, he might begin to peak come next month.

When do you think Ronaldo will begin to hit the back of the net regularly again? Let us know in the comments section below.

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