UCL: Villarreal Vs Juventus – Match preview

UCL: Villarreal Vs Juventus – Match preview

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21 Feb 2022
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Villarreal vs Juventus

Like a true Italian side, Juventus were mostly well-composed at the back during the group stage, registering four clean sheets and winning the possession stakes in both away victories.

Villarreal

Villarreal approach their first UEFA Champions League knockout tie since 2008/09 with confidence, after winning half of their group stage fixtures. Yet, with both defeats coming against another side (Manchester United) that boast a better UEFA coefficient than themselves, they will be wary of expecting too much against two-time European champions Juventus. A 0-0 draw against La Liga leaders Real Madrid in Villarreal’s last home game may provide something of a psychological boost for last season’s Europa League winners, with that draw making it six home games without sinking for the ‘Yellow Submarine’. Similarly, three of their four UEFA Champions League home wins since last beating Italian opposition at the Estadio de la Cerámica (1-0 vs Inter back in April 2006) have been accompanied by a clean sheet.

Juventus

Juventus find themselves in the UEFA Champions League knockouts for an eighth straight season, and will aim to make the final for the third time within that period. Like a true Italian side, they were mostly well-composed at the back during the group stage, registering four clean sheets and winning the possession stakes in both away victories. Their Serie A away form since mid-November also reads well, with three 2-0 wins – each seeing both halves won – within that streak. They’ve also recorded three victories across their last five trips to Spain, though there is also a warning for the ‘Bianconeri’, as the Italian giants have lost their last three Round of 16 away legs.

 

High on confidence after a weekend hat-trick against Granada, Arnaut Danjuma netted in both halves during Villarreal’s Group F matchday six win over Atalanta, while Weston McKennie scored Juventus’ only open-play goal during their last away clash against Spanish opposition. Juventus have a 100 per cent record from the last 13 UEFA Champions League matches to see them net first.

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