There’s no doubt that Cristiano Ronaldo’s arrival at Juventus has affected Paulo Dybala, the man previously considered the club’s star player.
Ronaldo was always going to become Juve’s main man following his £100 million move from Real Madrid last summer - he’s one of the greatest footballers of all time, after all - but nobody would have imagined Dybala would struggle quite so badly this season.
Prior to Friday night’s Serie A clash against Frosinone, Dybala had only managed to score two goals in 20 league appearances. Last season, by contrast, he bagged 22 in Serie A alone.
Dybala had seven goals in 28 games in all competitions ahead of Juve’s most recent fixture but took his tally to eight - and three in the league - with a fantastic goal from outside the box.
Ronaldo laid the ball off to Dybala, who unleashed a rocket with his left foot. The ball flew past Frosinone goalkeeper Marco Sportiello, who didn’t stand a chance.
While Dybala has clearly suffered since Ronaldo joined the club, certainly in terms of his goalscoring stats, there’s no bad blood between them.
In fact, the star forwards are now combining their famous goal celebrations.
When Ronaldo scored against Sassuolo last Sunday, he pulled off his ‘Siiii!’ celebration before doing the Dybala mask.
And when Dybala netted his long-range stunner at the Allianz Stadium on Friday evening, he produced the exact same celebration.
Ronaldo then repaid the favour later in the match after scoring Juve's third of the night.
It’s quite sweet really.
Ronaldo never took part in shared celebrations at Real Madrid, so it’s fair to assume he’s enjoying his time in Turin with the current group at Juventus.
And fair play to Dybala, who clearly feels no bitterness towards Ronaldo after losing his status as the club’s number one forward.
By the way, in case you were wondering what on earth the ‘Dybalamask’ is all about, the South American explained the meaning behind his unusual celebration a couple of years back.
“Dybalamask is really simple,” Dybala explained on Facebook, per Goal, “It's the mask of a gladiator!
“When we struggle, sometimes we must wear our warrior mask to be stronger, without losing our smile and kindness!”News Now - Sport News