Nowadays, Juventus are enjoying their finest run of the campaign on the domestic scene. Despite a ravaging injury crisis, Max Allegri’s men have been collecting points left and right as of late, which saw them enter the Scudetto race as outsiders looking in.
Nonetheless, all the positive momentum gathered lately could suddenly vanish if the Bianconeri fail to progress to the Champions League Quarter Finals for the third year in a row.
The Old Lady earned a hard-fought draw away to Villarreal in the first leg, but the encounter remains extremely balanced ahead of the return fixture.
So here are three keys to victory for Juventus as they prepare to host the Yellow Submarines at the Allianz Stadium.
As they say, patience is a great virtue. For the first time since 2017, Juventus won’t have to enter the second leg of the round of 16 while trailing in the score.
In the last two versions, the Bianconeri looked rushed and sloppy when hosting Lyon and Porto at this stage following an away defeat.
This time, the two sides enter level on the scoresheet due to the cancelation of the away goal rule.
Therefore, the Italians need to remain calm and composed, as opening up too much spaces for any Spanish could prove to be costly.
Utilizing the Flanks
As we’ve seen against Sampdoria, Alvaro Morata and Juan Cuadrado are becoming an unlikely yet efficient combination on the wings.
The two experienced players are fast, intelligent, and can launch stunning counter attacks from their own areas straight into the opposition’s box.
Even though Villarreal surely possess more quality than the struggling Samp, their fullbacks might not be their strongest point, which can render Allegri’s wingers even more dangerous.
Despite Paulo Dybala’s return, Juventus will have few first team players to bring on during the second half. For instance, the squad lacks alternatives in midfield.
Therefore, the men who will start the match will have to conserve their levels of energy until the last stages of the match – especially with extra time becoming a more likely outcome following the cancelation of the away goal rule.
Thus, a slower tempo in the first half could help in this regard.