The last time Juventus and Bayern Munich played one another in the Champions League knockout rounds, the two-legged tie was pretty much over and done with after 90 minutes. Juventus returned to Turin for the second having to play out a European matchup that was quite the one-sided affair despite the fact that Juve roaring through Serie A.
Time has changed since that meeting three years ago. Players have come and gone. One of those players who still remains, a Juventus goalkeeper by the name of Gianluigi Buffon, just so happened to talk about the difference between then and now with another European showdown with Bayern on the horizon.
.@gianluigibuffon: "We're a lot more self-assured than we were three years ago. We also know more about @FCBayernEN." #JuveFCB #UCL— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) February 22, 2016
Juventus have a right to be confident entering tonight's opening leg of the Round of 16 against Bayern. They're currently on a 16-game unbeaten run in Serie A, they're assured of being atop the table entering the weekend thanks to Napoli's draw with Milan on Monday. And, more importantly, Juve are just playing well in the grande scheme of things right now.
Of course, to compete with Bayern the same kind of performance that we saw against Bologna this past Friday can't happen. It needs to be more of the team we saw against Napoli rather than the one that showed up at the Dall'Ara four days ago. That fact is obvious, and something that I don't think I need to repeat at any given point of this post.
Now we just see if that happens. Juventus Stadium will surely be buzzing — and that's probably before they've seen the absolutely brilliant hype video Juventus posted a day or two ago. (Feel free to watch it about 20 times, by the way. it's a good one.)
Please, Good Juventus, show your face once again. It sure would be good timing. Nobody wants a repeat of history. We already have sad Antonio Conte as a result of Bayern, we don't need the same thing to happen to Max Allegri, too.
Juventus XI (4-4-2-ish): Gianluigi Buffon; Stephan Lichtsteiner, Andrea Barzagli, Leonardo Bonucci, Patrice Evra; Juan Cuadrado, Sami Khedira, Claudio Marchisio, Paul Pogba; Paulo Dybala, Mario Mandzukic
Juventus bench: Neto, Daniele Rugani, Stefano Sturaro, Roberto Pereyra, Hernanes, Simone Zaza, Álvaro Morata
Bayern Munich XI (4-1-4-1): Manuel Neuer; Philipp Lahm, Joshua Kimmich, David Alaba, Juan Bernat; Arturo Vidal; Arjen Robben, Thiago Alcantara, Thomas Müller, Costa; Robert Lewandowski
Bayern Munich bench: Sven Ulreich, Madhi Benatia, Franck Ribery, Rafinha, Xabi Alonso, Mario Götze, Kingsley Coman
How to watch
TV: Fox Sports 2, Fox Deportes (United States); beIN Sports Canada (Canada); BT Sport Showcase, BT Sport 2 (United Kingdom)
Online: Fox Soccer 2GO USA, Fox Sports GO (United States); beIN Sports CONNECT (Canada); BT Sport Live Streaming (United Kingdom)
Other live viewing options can be found here, and as always, you can also follow along with us live on Twitter. If you haven't already, join the community on Black & White & Read All Over, and join in the discussion below.