Rome, Italy | THE INDEPENDENT | AC Milan registered its first win of 2021 as it beat Benevento 2-0 despite being one player down, while Cristiano Ronaldo’s double helped Juventus crush Udinese 4-1 in Italy’s Serie A championship.
Milan made the trip to Benevento without the injured Zlatan Ibrahimovic and suspended Theo Hernandez.
Facing the newly-promoted side coached by ex-Milan star Filippo Inzaghi, the Rossoneri broke the deadlock in the 14th minute when Franck Kessie converted a penalty after Ante Rebic was fouled in the box.
Milan then went down to ten men in the 32rd minute as Sandro Tonali saw red after an awful tackle on Artur Ionita, but nevertheless doubled their lead just after the break, as Rafael Leao looped over on-rushing goalkeeper Lorenzo Montipo.
Benevento should have pulled a goal back, but Gianluca Caprari’s penalty cannoned off the post.
Milan still lead the Serie A table with 37 points, one ahead of city rivals Inter Milan, who overturned Crotone 6-2 on Sunday thanks to Lautaro Martinez’s hat-trick.
Juventus bounced back from a 3-0 home defeat to Fiorentina by dominating Udinese, as Ronaldo bagged a brace and set up another for Federico Chiesa, with Paulo Dybala also on target.
Elsewhere, Duvan Zapata’s brace helped Atalanta smash Sassuolo 5-1, Roma edged past Sampdoria 1-0 thanks to Edin Dzeko’s goal, and Torino ended its winless run with a 3-0 away victory over Parma.
In Sunday’s other fixtures, Napoli won 4-1 away to Cagliari, Genoa held Lazio 1-1, Hellas Verona edged past Spezia 1-0, and Fiorentina and Bologna played out a 0-0 draw.