The hosts are hoping to clinch the top spot in the group when they host the Old Lady, and this is my Barcelona vs Juventus Preview for that Champions League encounter.
Barcelona Recent Form & Team News
A 2-1 defeat at the weekend gave Barcelona their worst ten-game start to a LaLiga season since 1987/88. However, in the Champions League they’ve been a different beast, winning all five games so far – leading at HT in four – and subsequently are all but guaranteed to finish top of the group unless Juventus secure a 3+ goal margin win.
That seems unlikely, especially with Barcelona netting 4+ goals in four of their seven competitive home fixtures this term (W5, D1, L1). However Barcelona’s last five UCL defeats at all venues came by at least a three-goal margin, albeit you must go back to May 2013 to find the last time they lost by 3+ goals in a UCL match at the Camp Nou. They have reason to go for victory themselves too – they can become only the second team in UCL history to win all six group stage games in two separate campaigns.
Player to watch: Martin Braithwaite has scored three goals across Barcelona’s last two UCL matches, and was the game’s second scorer in both.
Ronald Koeman will be without Ousmane Dembele (muscle), Anssumane Fati (knee), Gerard Pique (knee), Sergi Roberto (thigh), and Samuel Umtiti (knee),
Juventus Recent Form & Team News
Juventus have already qualified for what is their seventh consecutive knockouts appearance, losing only to Barcelona this UCL campaign (W4, L1). They’ve gone eight games unbeaten in all competitions since that defeat (W6, D2), although the fact they kept a clean sheet in just two shows it’s not all been plain sailing. Don’t discount the 36-time Italian champions though, as they’ve won five of their previous eight games versus Spanish opponents (D1, L2).
Unbeaten away this season in all competitions (W3, D4), Juventus have also won four of their previous five UCL away games (L1), netting the opener in each victory.
Player to watch: Cristiano Ronaldo has netted four goals across his last four appearances for Juventus – three came before HT.
Hot stat: The home side on the day has led at halftime in just two of Juventus’ last 12 competitive matches.
Andrea Pirlo cannot count on Giorgio Chiellini (muscle) and Merih Demiral (muscle).
I hope you’ll enjoy a mouthwatering clash between Messi and Ronaldo, and if you enjoyed reading this Barcelona vs Juventus Preview, make sure to follow us on social networks and subscribe to our website for more Champions League news and previews.