Juventus v Dinamo Zagreb
Champions League – Wednesday, 7th December – 19:45 GMT – Juventus Stadium
Juventus head into the last group match of the Champions League knowing that victory will guarantee them top spot in Group H.
It’s been a muddling campaign, but despite the mixed performances, the Bianconeri are undefeated, despite missing a number of key first-team players for most the season. On the plus side, Andrea Barzagli is back with the squad and training again, while Paulo Dybala is expected to play tonight.
Speaking ahead of the match, Allegri gave some indicators on his starting XI for the game.
“Dybala will certainly play some of the second half. I have let him return gradually from his injury, but Mandzukic and Higuain will start,” said the Coach in his Press conference.
“Everyone is fine. If I decide to play four at the back, then Stefano Sturaro will be the full-back, otherwise it’ll be three. It’s unlikely Giorgio Chiellini will play. He was out for a long time, so it’s only right to let him recover at his own pace.
“Alex Sandro and Sami Khedira will rest, so Patrice Evra and Mario Lemina will start. Marko Pjaca is recovering, but we won’t see him again in 2016.”
Allegri was asked whether it might have been better to finish second, considering some of the other bigger sides have finished in second place in their respective groups.
“It makes me laugh because for months we got criticised for not starting the group well, because it was so important to finish top of the group and get advantages, now you’re asking us if we’d be better off finishing second. You’re ridiculous!
“The important thing tomorrow is to start aggressive and get the game on track quickly, because it’s not easy when the opposition puts 10 men behind the ball.”
3-5-2: Buffon; Rugani, Benatia, Evra; Cuadrado, Lemina, Marchisio, Pjanic, Asamoah; Mandzukic, Higuain.
Bonucci (hamstring), Barzagli (shoulder), Alves (fibula), Pjaca (fibula), Mandragora (foot).
4-5-1: Livakovic; Stojanovic, Benkovic, Schildenfeld, Pivaric; Situm, Pavicic, Knezevic, Gojak, Coric; Fernandes.