And just like that, the final day of the Champions League group stage arrives.
What started against Barcelona will also end against Barcelona. Rather than Turin, Juventus will face the Spanish giants at their own legendary stadium, although the obvious atmosphere factor won’t be such a huge deal because of the fact that there’s still no fans allowed in those hallowed and famous doors. The much-awaited Lionel Messi vs. Cristiano Ronaldo duel that was expected to go down at the end of October only to be put off by the latter’s COVID-19 diagnosis now gets one of its last chapters written this evening.
Juventus vs. Barcelona has history and prestige and everything in between.
If only the two clubs’ form resembled such a big-time matchup.
Two of the biggest clubs in the world are currently two of the most notable clubs in transition. And their inconsistent form — especially domestically — has resulted in quite the interesting situation entering this game where Juventus needs to win by two goals and score at least three times if they want to be able to say they finished atop Group G and avoid at least a few European heavyweights come next week’s round of 16 draw.
So, basically, you’re saying there’s a chance?
Sure, I guess.
A slim one, but a chance nonetheless. Maybe.
If they want any chance to even have the possibility of finishing atop Group G enter their minds, Juventus will have to play miles ahead of what they have been over the last 180 minutes of ball. The wins over over Ferancvaros and Torino in the Derby della Mole were far from anything remotely good. Juve were not good — at all. And if Juventus want any chance of recording a win against Barcelona (no matter what the final score may be), then things will have to get better in a hurry tonight.
So, we’ll see.
Maybe a 3-0 win is too much to ask. But, at the same time, a win would be nice regardless.
When: Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2020
Where: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain
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 (3-4-1-2/4-4-2): Buffon; de Ligt, Bonucci, Danilo; Cuadrado, McKennie, Arthur, Alex Sandro; Ramsey; Morata, Ronaldo
Juventus bench: Szczesny, Pinsoglio, Dybala, Chiesa, Rabiot, Bentancur, Bernardeschi, Da Graca, Dragusin, Frabotta, Portanova, Kulusevski
Barcelona starting XI (4-2-3-1): Ter Stegen; Dest, Lenglet, Araujo, Jordi Alba; De Jong, Pjanic; Messi, Griezmann, Pedri; Trincao
Barcelona bench: Neto, Inaki Pena, Busquets, Alena, Braithwaite, Ricard Puig, Coutinho, Matheus Fernandes, Umtiti, Junior Firpo, Mingueza, De La Fuente
HOW TO WATCH
Television: TUDN USA, Univision (United States); BT Sport ESPN (United Kingdom); Sky Sport Uno, Sky Sport 252 (Italy)
Online/mobile: CBS All Access, TUDN.com, TUDNxtra, TUDN App, Univision NOW (United States); DAZN (Canada); BTSport.com, BT Sport app (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.