UEFA Champions League | Villarreal vs Juventus: 5 Talking Points Before Kick Off

Juventus’ most memorable goals vs Torino

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Villarreal vs Juventus: Line-ups



Big Disadvantage for Juve


Emery’s glittering success in the second tier of Europe’s continental competition is unparalleled, but the former Arsenal and Paris Saint-Germain boss will be more aware than anyone that his side are major underdogs to lift the Champions League trophy aloft.


Villarreal largely managed to hold their own in the group stages – despite suffering a pair of defeats to Manchester United – as a thrilling 3-2 win away to Atalanta BC on the final matchday confirmed their place in the knockout rounds for the first time since 2009.


Juve have started to falter in Serie A once again and did not warm up for this contest in ideal fashion – forced to settle for a 1-1 draw with Torino in the Derby della Mole as Matthijs de Ligt’s early effort was cancelled out by the visitors’ talisman Andrea Belotti.


The 1995-96 Champions League winners are making their eighth consecutive appearance in the knockout rounds, but the last-16 curse has bedevilled them for the past two years – going out at this stage to Lyon in 2020 before that disheartening exit to Porto last year.


A seven-game unbeaten run in all competitions is nothing to be sniffed at, though, and Juve will lock horns with Villarreal for the first time ever competitively this week, with the Yellow Submarine thrashing the Old Lady 4-1 in a friendly back in 2009.

DPP Verdict

With Juve’s ongoing absentee woes in the final and defensive third, a Danjuma-inspired Villarreal ought to sense a major opportunity to gain the upper hand in the tie amid their hot streak of form. A wounded Bianconeri are not to be underestimated by any stretch, but their struggles without a full-strength squad were evident in the Torino derby draw, and we can see Emery’s Villarreal taking a slender first-leg advantage to Turin.