In one sense, Atlético Madrid wants what Juventus already has. Juve, thanks to the weaving run of Douglas Costa, was able to lock up a spot in the Champions League knockout rounds before the last international break, meaning that the round of 16 is already in the Italian champions’ future with a couple of group stage games to spare.
Atlético Madrid, while close to qualification, hasn’t gotten there yet.
And Juventus, with qualification already in its back pocket, needs just one point to clinch the top spot in Group D and basically make the final group stage game — a trip to Bayer Leverkusen next month — essentially meaningless in the grand scheme of things.
That’s what we have going tonight when Juventus and Atlético Madrid face one another on what will be a chilly in at Allianz Stadium in Turin. It is the first meeting in Italy between the two clubs since that Cristiano Ronaldo-led comeback in the round of 16 earlier this calendar year, a game that you know will probably pop into the heads of some of Atléti’s players as they arrive at Allianz Stadium a couple of hours before kickoff.
For one club, it’s about just getting to the round of 16.
For the other, the one we like here, it’s about wrapping up first place in the group and potentially making the round of 16 draw a little easier to deal with.
But, just like we saw from Atlético Madrid in the first group stage this season, even when their overall form isn’t all that great, they’re still an incredibly tough out. And now with Atléti playing rather well the last six or eight weeks, it’s going to be interesting to see what kind of game unfolds. You know they’re going to press. You know they’re going to be a tough nut to crack defensively. You know they’re going to work their tails off in the midfield.
That is what a Diego Simeone team does.
Now it’s time to see what Maurizio Sarri’s team, one that has been grinding out results for the better part of the last six weeks, do enough to get that one last point they need to get first place in Group D. That, my friends, would be quite nice.
When: Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2019
Where: Allianz Stadium, Turin, Italy
Official kickoff time: 9 p.m. local time in Italy and across Europe; 8 p.m. in the United Kingdom; 3 p.m. Eastern Time; 12 p.m. Pacific Time
Juventus starting XI (4-3-1-2): Szczesny; Danilo, Bonucci, de Ligt, De Sciglio; Bentancur, Pjanic, Matuidi; Ramsey; Dybala, Ronaldo
Juventus bench: Buffon, Rugani, Demiral, Khedira, Cuadrado, Higuain, Bernardeschi
Atlético Madrid starting XI (4-4-2): Oblak; Trippier, Felipe, Hermoso, Renan Lodi; Saul Niguez, Herrera, Thomas, Koke; Morata, Vitolo
Atlético Madrid bench: Adan, Arias, Joao Felix, Correa, Lemar, Llorente, Saponjic
HOW TO WATCH
Television: Galavision (United States); Canale 5, Sky Sport Uno, NOW TV, Sky Calcio 2 (Italy)
Online/mobile: B/R Live, Univision NOW (United States); DAZN (Canada); BT Sport Extra (United Kingdom); SKY Go Italia (Italy)
Other live viewing options can be found here, and as always, you can also follow along with us live and all the stupid things we say on Twitter. If you haven’t already, join the community on Black & White & Read All Over, and join in the discussion below.