Is there a better match than the one that features Cristiano Ronaldo on one, and Lionel Messi on the other side? Juventus awaits Barcelona in the second round of UEFA Champions League Group G, and this event is the highlight of the entire week. Two of the world’s best players should have clashed once again, adding another chapter in their long-lasting rivalry. However, due to COVID-19 infection, Ronaldo won’t participate in this event. But that won’t diminish the importance of the meeting. Both teams disappointed this weekend, and that makes things even more interesting.
Juventus (+165) didn’t lose since the season opener, but the Old Lady didn’t amaze anyone with their performances. Furthermore, Andrea Pirlo’s guys began the season with mild performances, posting three draws in four latest Serie A matches. The most recent was against Verona, 1-1, and the same result was 10 days ago in Crotone.
These two results shook the morale of Juve’s fans, as well as Andrea Pirlo’s credibility. Many believe that he isn’t experienced enough to lead a squad like Juventus’, which puts him under a lot of pressure from various sides.
Five of six matches team from Turin played during this campaign saw moderate efficiency, 2 or 3 goals.
Barcelona (+150) suffered an unpleasant loss at home in El Clasico, which is another slap in the face for Ronald Koeman, whose tenure at Camp Nou started much worse than planned. Apart from the UCL victory against Ferencvaros, 5-1, Blaugrana hasn’t won a match in more than three weeks.
Getafe turned out to be lethal for them on October 17, and before the international pause, they played 1-1 at home against Sevilla. In all those games, Barcelona showed many flaws, and Koeman will have to dig deep to correct all of them. He has short notice for all that, as many challenges await his side in the near future.
Barcelona allowed at least a goal in the last four games.
The Portuguese awaied his COVID-19 test results until late last night, and they came back positive, which would force him to skip Barca.
Alex Sandro is probably out, while Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci stand as doubtful. De Ligt got a green light for this match.
Marc-Andre Ter Stegen, Philippe Coutinho, and Samuel Umtiti are all out for this match, due to an injury. Gerard Pique is under a red-card suspension.
Head to Head Matches
Juventus has five wins, Barcelona four, and four events saw a draw in the end. Yet, Barca won in the most important meeting of them all, in the 2015 UCL finals, 3-1.
The pressure is high on both Pirlo and Koeman. Neither of these two managed to produce satisfying performances in the first few weeks, which is somewhat understandable knowing how the previous season ended. Then again, these two clubs have high expectations, and the fans don’t want any excuses, the same as their boards.
Therefore, a high-scoring affair is out of the question this Wednesday night, and the best these two sides can offer are 2 or 3 goals, meaning a moderate efficiency. Odds here are at +105
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.