Life after Cristiano Ronaldo got off to the worst possible start for Juventus as they were beaten at home by Empoli on Saturday evening. The defeat leaves Juventus in 13th place in Serie A after two matches.
The only goal of the game came midway through the first half courtesy of the Empoli striker Leonardo Mancuso. After half-time, the Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri introduced Álvaro Morata, Dejan Kulusevski and new signing Manuel Locatelli from the substitutes’ bench but, even with all that firepower on the pitch, they created few openings of note.
Ciro Immobile’s hat-trick inspired Lazio to a 6-1 thrashing of Spezia as the Rome club made it two wins from two at the start of the new season. Daniele Verdi had put Spezia ahead in the fourth minute at Stadio Olimpico, but Immobile replied a minute later, and put Lazio ahead on 15 minutes. The Italy forward missed a penalty in first-half stoppage time but scored his third goal with a header from the resulting corner. Felipe Anderson, Elseid Hysaj and Luis Alberto added second-half goals for Maurizio Sarri’s side.
Fiorentina defeated Torino 2-1, with Dusan Vlahovic scoring what proved to be the winner in the 70th minute, while Atalanta missed a host of chances as they drew 0-0 at home against Bologna.
Elsewhere, the Milan coach Stefano Pioli said that striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic will not be ready to return from injury in Sunday’s Serie A match at home against Cagliari. Ibrahimovic, who will turn 40 in October, has been out of action since damaging his left knee during Milan’s 3-0 Serie A victory over Juventus in May, with the matches after the international break a more likely target.
In Germany, Bayer Leverkusen had plenty of help as they won 4-1 away to Augsburg to go top of the Bundesliga table, with the hapless home side gifting them two own goals in the opening 14 minutes.
Champions Bayern Munich thrashed visitors Hertha Berlin 5-0 in the late kick-off, with Robert Lewandowski netting a superb hat-trick and Thomas Müller and Jamal Musiala grabbing a goal each. The Poland striker Lewandowski has scored at least once in each of his last 16 official matches for Bayern, bettering Gerd Müller’s record of scoring in 15 consecutive games between 1969 and 1970.
Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski celebrates scoring his side’s fifth goal against Hertha Berlin. Photograph: Matthias Schräder/AP
Freiburg’s Jeong Woo-Yeong scored twice in the opening nine minutes as they raced into a 3-0 lead against Stuttgart by the half-hour mark and while the home side fought back with two goals just before half-time, they eventually lost 3-2.
Arminia Bielefeld recorded their third draw in three Bundesliga games but it took an 86th-minute goal from Austrian midfielder Patrick Wimmer to secure a 1-1 draw at home to Eintracht Frankfurt. Cologne’s Tim Lemperle struck a stoppage-time winner as they edged Bochum 2-1, while Mainz had no problems against Greuther Fürth, winning 3-0 at home.
In Spain, Real Madrid recorded their second win of the season with a 1-0 victory away to Real Betis. The only goal of the game came after 16 minutes in the second half. Karim Benzema picked out Dani Carvajal’s run into the Betis box and the right-back’s volley was enough to ensure Real Madrid took all three points and a position at the top of the La Liga table.
Meanwhile, the Barcelona head coach Ronald Koeman said the amount of money being spent in this transfer window was “absurd” given the financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, adding that he had accepted his side could no longer compete with the top sides for players.
“These figures are absurd, we’re in a world where everyone has had financial problems lately so it’s crazy to pay so much given the situation,” Koeman told reporters.
The Dutchman also said he would not begrudge Madrid signing Mbappé. “If Madrid have the money to spend on him … he’s one of the best players in the world and I’d also like to have Mbappé in my team,” he said.
Athletic Bilbao won 1-0 away at Celta Vigo in La Liga, Elche and Sevilla drew 1-1, while Real Sociedad defeated Levante 1-0.
In France, Nice hammered Bordeaux 4-0 to continue their fine start to the Ligue 1 season on Saturday, a week after crowd trouble marred their previous match.
In a game that was played behind closed doors pending investigations into the incidents that caused their home game against Marseille to be abandoned last Sunday, Nice prevailed through an early goal by Justin Kluivert, a double by Amine Gouiri and Khéphren Thuram’s late strike.
The result lifted them up to second on seven points from three completed matches, two behind Paris Saint-Germain who travel to Reims on Sunday, a match in which Lionel Messi is expected to make his debut for his new club.