Match Review Champions League

Barcelona 0 – 0 Juventus Champions League Player Ratings

April 20, 2017 - 8:20 pm


Barcelona 0-0 Juventus

Barcelona had their chances but the Juventus defence made the difference in a 0-0 draw that takes the Bianconeri through to the Champions League semi-finals.


Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Sergi Roberto (Mascherano 78), Piqué, Umtiti, Jordi Alba; Rakitic (Alcacer 58), Busquets, Iniesta; Messi, Suarez, Neymar

Juventus: Buffon; Dani Alves, Bonucci, Chiellini, Alex Sandro; Pjanic, Khedira; Cuadrado (Lemina 83), Dybala (Barzagli 74), Mandzukic; Higuain (Asamoah 88)

Ref: Kuipers (NED)


Player Ratings

BUFFON: Had to be on his toes all night as Barca had good periods of pressure. One brief lapse in concentration aside, he was in command of his box, vocal in conducting the defence and kept the back line working in harmony.  7.0

DANI ALVES: Started well but wasn’t as tight on Neymar as in the first leg – Beaten by his compatriot on a few occasions down the flanks and in front of the box. Linked play really well with Cuadrado to provide Juve with an outlet down the right. Stayed in his own half for much of the night, which was only to be expected, as Barcelona focused most of their attack down the right . Solid.  6.5

BONUCCI: It was difficult to improve on the display in Turin – But then ‘difficult’ isn’t in Leo Bonucci’s vocabulary. When he and Chiellini play to this sort of level, it’s hard to find a better pairing in football….anywhere. His reading of the game, and more importantly, his positioning and awareness is second to none. Made some truly vital interceptions and restricted Suarez to a cameo role for the entire 90 minutes. This certainly wasn’t catenaccio,  it was something else altogether – A rough-and-tumble defensive masterclass, ably assisted by Chiello.  10 Clearances, 5 Tackles and 4 Interceptions. A defensive colossus.  9.0

CHIELLINI: Much like his teammate, he barely put a foot wrong. Alert and aware throughout, marking Suarez, breaking up play and covering for his partner when needed. If it wasn’t Bonucci, it was Chiellini, and if it wasn’t Chiellini, it was Bonucci. Always alert to any and every threat – When Barcelona lofted crosses into the box, it was Chiellini who cleared. When they played those perfect, precise passes, it was Chiellini who intercepted. He’s enjoying a renaissance of sorts, and what a joy it is to watch. 9.0


ALEX SANDRO: Given that Messi would be Barca’s main threat, Sandro was restricted to a more defensive role this time around. It’s a testament to how much he’s improved in his defensive duties that Leo was relatively quiet for most of the night. His understanding with Mandzukic is improving and they provide the perfect duo on the left.  7.0

PJANIC: ‘Outstanding’ would be an understatement. Alive to the Barca threat, he worked every blade of grass in the centre of the pitch, exerting pressure when the home side was in possession. Strung together neat passes to bring the ball forward and launch counter attacks. Showed his more physical side over the course of these two matches and is ending the season in the way he started. Sublime  8.5

KHEDIRA: Had a glorious chance to score late on, which he really should have buried. On the plus side, his defensive work over the two-legs was immense. Broke up the Barca attacks, timed his tackles well, worked hard for the entire match. 7.0

CUADRADO: He may have neglected his defensive duties, but he was arguably Juve’s most potent attacking player, constantly finding possession in the final third, always looking to pass to a teammate or fire in a cross for Pipita. If he could be more direct at times and finish his chances, he could be in double digits for the season. 7.5

MANDZUKIC: It takes a level of sacrifice to move from playing as a typical ‘9’ to left-midfield. For all intents and purposes, he was a left-back-cum-left-midfielder for these two-legs, working tirelessly in the Juve box on corners. He provided a good outlet on the left, trying his best to pressure Barca when they were in possession.  6.5

DYBALA: Utterly restricted in this leg, largely due to the Barcelona midfield, who did a good job of keeping La Joya quiet. A snatched half chance and a few brief forays into the box aside, he was subdued for much of the match. 6.5

HIGUAIN: Missed 3 very good chances in the first half, any one of which would have settled Juve nerves for the remainder of the match. A frustrating figure in games like this where he gets the opportunities but fails to capitalise on them. Other than that, he did a good job at holding up play and worked hard to bring the ball out from the Juve half. 6.0





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  • Avatar
    Dar Black April 20, 2017 at 8:33 pm

    Higuain’s misses worry me. Our defence is beyond great.

    • Avatar
      Jas April 21, 2017 at 2:58 am

      If you can beat Barcelona this bad with higguain being a ghost imagine what you can do when he’s the gonzalo we admire on a good day.

      • Avatar
        Dar Black April 21, 2017 at 5:57 am

        Yes, but he never seems to be Gonzo on a good day in the CL. That stretches back to his matches before he joined us. Mental block?

        • Avatar
          Storm April 21, 2017 at 8:19 am

          This has been a topic of discussion, but maybe he will come to realize that a complete Juve is more stable than any of his other clubs. This could lead to a more relaxed approached or lets say more focused, hopefully.

  • Avatar
    duder1897 April 20, 2017 at 8:43 pm

    Cuadrado neglected his defensive duties? I think you need to watch this game a few more times.

    • thegutterpoet
      thegutterpoet April 21, 2017 at 12:09 am

      I found him as good a performer as anyone in black and white…he made several tackles which caused me to clap and applaud, whilst also offering a threat on the break and up top. A couple of sumptuous balls into the box we failed to connect with…other than which one effort drilled wide which he should have done better with. He was as valuable to this hard earned result as any other in the side. By what my eyes saw…

      • Avatar
        duder1897 April 21, 2017 at 12:37 pm

        He helped out Dani on several occasions often being first defender against Neymar. I thought Cuadrado was excellent.

  • Avatar
    Juventino Persa April 20, 2017 at 10:01 pm

    Man I have seen many football matches, but I really don’t remember any better central defender performance than Leo’s and Giorgio’s performances! Almost perfect! Imperious! They didn’t put one single foot wrong, even surprised Juve fans!

  • Avatar
    Jingiz April 20, 2017 at 11:51 pm

    Great game for Juve! Hope They will play in final against Real Madrid!

  • Avatar
    Jas April 21, 2017 at 12:59 am

    The arrogance of Luis Enrique was on full display during the whole match. Previous comments about how it will be easier to come back from this than vs PSG seemed bizarre honestly. He seemed completely clueless from the first whistle of game 1. You can phancy Barcelona all you want but no team is invincible. The fact that msn were kept scoreless in two games and with only four shots on target speaks volume in my opinion. The pundits, bloggers, commentators even journalists keep mentioning how Barca had an off day, how normally they would burry Juventus bla bla bla. The only reason that happend is because this is arguably the best defense in history and because they outclassed, outsmarted, outmaneuvered Barcelona. Barca didn’t have an off day, they can play 5 more matches I highly doubt they score more than a goal maybe two. La ligas defense are absolute rubish. For the first time in 7 years I finally believe that we can go toe to toe with anyone, throw us in the lions den and watch us feast. Couple of side notes;
    Dybala really needs to get faster, he was always beat by the fullbacks when they ran in to open space. Higguain is just so f***** slow to react it’s irritates the hell out of me, he gave up the ball so many times as soon as he received it. Alex Sandro is the best left back in the world, nothing more needs to be said, what a bargain for 25 mill. The era of Barcelonas dominance is over folks, mark my words. This team needs 5-7 new starters to get back to form, but that’s not going to happen and I see them rebuilding next transfer window. What made them great was La Massia but the academy hasn’t produced one note worthy player since thiago alcantara debuted 5-6 years ago. Iniesta will become a part time player, Messi and suarez will be 31 both. Poor management by barcas board, id get rid of every single director. To finish it, I believe and the fact that we did this to Barcelona over the span of two games we really have no one to fear in this completion. I don’t care who our next opponent is, after these two games they fear of getting juventus the most while we don’t fear anyone.

  • Avatar
    Mikkel Andersen April 21, 2017 at 6:58 am

    Juve should go after either Veratti 80 mill or Mbappe 80 mill. I know they are two different players, but the bring QUALITY to Juve. Then sign Tolisso or Douglas Costa – both 40 mill players.That’s a 120 mill. Sell either Lemina, Rincon or Sturaro 10-15 mill.

    • Avatar
      Xx RForcE xX April 21, 2017 at 4:09 pm

      1 good season doesnt make Mbappe worth 80m mate plus Pjanic proved that Veratti isnt what we need now, I prefer Tolisso , right winger and striker.Thats all we need.

  • Avatar
    Storm April 21, 2017 at 10:16 am

    In case anybody else needs the link to the live draw

    • Avatar
      Storm April 21, 2017 at 10:21 am

      Total superstition here, but we have the best home record. If/when we proceed from the semi’s we will be considered the home team in the final, may that bring us luck.