Spanis heavyweights Barcelona will face off against Juventus in the Champions League group stage on Tuesday night. The match promises to be the defining game on Matchday 1 with Barca looking to avenge last season’s quarter-final defeat against the Old Lady.
Barcelona have maintained a 100 percent record in the Spanish La Liga, and they are currently leading the table with nine points. Max Allegri’s side have also made a similar start to their Serie A campaign but they have had to fight back in an intense game against Genoa earlier last month.
The previous outing at the Camp Nou ended in a 0-0 draw with Juventus progressing to the semi-final of the Champions League on a 3-0 aggregate scoreline. The Bianconeri clinched a comfortable 3-0 victory in the Turin leg of the quarter-final with a brace from Paulo Dybala and a goal from Georginio Chiellini securing the result.
Players to watch for:
Lionel Messi – Barcelona:
The Argentine maestro has bagged six goals in just five games this season, and he looks on course to have another top season for the Catalan giants. Messi recently bagged a hat-trick in the 5-0 mauling of Espanyol, and this puts him in the right frame of mind for Juventus amid the uncertainty over his future.
Paulo Dybala – Juventus:
Messi’s compatriot Dybala needs no introduction to Barcelona. Ernesto Valverde’s had made tentative enquiries for the Argentine during the summer but Juventus were never keen on his sale. Dybala has already notched seven goals in four outings for the Old Lady, and he will be raring to go after being partially rested against Chievo.
The Old Lady backline is still recovering from the departures of Dani Alves and Leonardo Bonucci, and it could have a say on the overall makeup of the game. Allegri has looked to play three in midfield to add more solidity but Barcelona could clinch a close win.
Barcelona 1-0 Juventus
Image – Getty