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Qualification or start of crisis: decisive meeting for Juventus


Disappointing in the first leg (2-1 defeat), Juventus Turin is playing big on home ground against Porto (Tuesday, 9 p.m.). Already in difficulty in the league, premature elimination from the knockout stages of the Champions League would be difficult to cash. 

As the second leg of the Champions League round of 16 approaches, Juventus find themselves in an unfavorable waiver after losing 2-1 to Porto.

Cristiano Ronaldo and his teammates know they are playing a big part of their season on this second act.

The Bianconeri players come to a turning point: an early elimination calling into question the Turin plans or a qualification in order to boost a group seven lengths behind the domestic leader in the league.

Since this famous first match in Portugal, the Old Lady has settled into a positive dynamic with three successes and a draw in the last four Serie A meetings. 

Juventus defeated Crotone (3-0), then suffered a stoppage against Hellas Verona (1-1) before recovering against La Spezia (3-0).

Last weekend, they won 3-1 against Lazio Rome, a meeting marked by the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo in the starting XI.

The Portuguese star started on the bench, a premeditated choice on the part of his coach Pirlo who was justified at a press conference.

“There were eight or nine games left in a row, we found an agreement for this weekend (for Ronaldo to rest), it was really planned.

Cristiano has already scored 20 goals, it's normal that the others also score, ”said the Italian.

... #JuveFCP

- JuventusFC (@juventusfc) March 8, 2021

The future of Andrea Pirlo at Juve at stake? 

Among the forces present, Pirlo says he is confident to find Mathis De Ligt and Giorgio Chiellini for the Champions League match, while both were recently injured.

He can also count on the return of Arthur and Cuadrado.

Only Paulo Dybala should be missing, the Argentine striker has not played since January 10.

His left knee injury looks longer than expected.

An absence compensated by the good form of Alvaro Morata since he distinguished himself by scoring a double last Saturday against Lazio (3-1). 

During his next meeting, Andrea Pirlo will have no excuse in his quest to qualify his team for the next round.

He finds himself at a decisive moment in his Turin adventure.

Faced with an opponent considered "affordable" at the time of the draw, an elimination would be a bitter failure blamed on the Italian coach.

No room for error therefore for the former midfielder who has had an eventful first season on the Bianconeri bench.

Read also

  • Juventus are full of confidence before facing Porto in C1

Source: lefigaro

All sports articles on 2021-03-08

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