Okay, so I may have bent the truth a little bit in the sub-caption. The results were pretty much exactly as most people would have expected. The formation chosen was 4-2-3-1 by a wide margin, and Gianluigi Buffon getting almost all the goalie votes.
In defense, Alex Sandro, Leonardo Bonucci, Daniele Rugani, and Dani Alves led the votes. None of them were really close to losing their spots.
Rugani has played excellent, deserving a start over Barzagli and Benatia (who has been much better as of late)
I think we need Benatia against Porto because he is fit and showed a great performance against Milan and the rest is as usual
Rugani over Benatia
There were a bunch of shouts for Alves at the RW spot though:
Dani Alves starts besides dybala. He can be more effective then cuadrado who can be lethal as a sub.
Seeing Dani Alves playing as a winger in Juve's last match against Milan, we could see him on the attack and maybe switching with Cuadrado or Lichsteiner for defence.
In the midfield, Claudio Marchisio and Sami Khedira fill the two pivot spots.
Play Marchisio. End of sentence.
Marchisio over Khedira due to a better passing option.
Tomas Rincon to harass the Porto players away from the ball and launch quick counterattacks using the speed of Juan Cuadrado to score and put the game to bed.
Rincon and Marchisio have a similar way of playing which could bring strenght to the midfield. their passing game is incredible and up to standard
In front of them, Miralem Pjanic mans the center of the attacking midfield, while Juan Cuadrado (he got majority votes during his time available) and Paulo Dybala surround him. This was the majority opinion, although it wasn’t unanimous:
Pjaca for Cuadrado. Good stage for him to refine his decision making and efficiency on the ball. If we concede or the game is tight, switch to the 352 and brig him off for Marchisio or Rincon.
Pjaca struck against Porto in the first leg, looked threatening multiple times, and seems to be gaining confidence. He could play 50mins and then give way to mandzukic once he tires out as he seems to do from running himself too hard.
Dybala on the left and Pjanic as CAM.
If Mandzu is still unavailable then Pjaca takes his place. If Mandzu plays then Pjaca takes the right. Cuadrado super sub.
And in front of them, it’s a formality, really. Gonzalo Higuain was on almost every ballot.
For the Manchester City vs. Napoli vote, 56.7% of readers voted for Manchester City. I would vote for Napoli. If I had the choice to play both teams, I would choose Manchester City every time.
BWRAO’s Starting XI (4-2-3-1): Gianluigi Buffon; Alex Sandro, Daniele Rugani, Leonardo Bonucci, Dani Alves; Claudio Marchisio, Sami Khedira; Juan Cuadrado, Miralem Pjanic, Paulo Dybala; Gonzalo Higuain.
Anthony’s Starting XI (4-2-3-1): Gianluigi Buffon; Alex Sandro, Daniele Rugani, Leonardo Bonucci, Dani Alves; Claudio Marchisio, Sami Khedira; Mario Mandzukic, Miralem Pjanic, Paulo Dybala; Gonzalo Higuain.