Villarreal vs Juventus

Villarreal vs Juventus

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22 Feb 2022
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Champions League; Villarreal vs Juventus

Villarreal welcomes Juventus to the Estadio de la Ceramica for the opening leg of their last-16 tie. Unai Emery, a multiple Europa League winner, will be looking to advance in the Champions League.

To make it this far, the Yellow Submarine placed second in Group F behind Manchester United, while Juventus won Group H ahead of reigning champions Chelsea.

Team News

Villarreal

  • Villarreal will get forward Yeremi Pino back following his suspension against Atalanta. But the continued absence of goal-scorer Gerard Moreno is a major setback.
  • Giovani Lo Celso will need to be assessed after being photographed with ice on his leg following his replacement against Granada. Francis Coquelin and Ruben Pena are also out of contention, with Etienne Capoue a slight worry.
  • Raul Albiol, a veteran defender, returns from a suspension to replace Aissa Mandi in the center of the defense. Meanwhile, Samuel Chukwueze and Juan Foyth should also return to the starting XI.

Juventus

  • Juventus will welcome back right-back Danilo from a domestic suspension, which might come at a good moment. This is because Juan Cuadrado is one yellow card away from a European suspension.
  • Allegri was already without Federico Bernardeschi, Federico Chiesa, and Giorgio Chiellini when Daniele Rugani pulled out of the 1-1 tie with Torino due to a warm-up injury, while Paulo Dybala was also injured and would miss the match.
  • Luca Pellegrini and Leonardo Bonucci are expected to play, though the former may not be ready to start, while Adrien Rabiot will also travel despite a slight injury scare on the training ground.
  • With Alvaro Morata and Dusan Vlahovic making their Champions League debuts as the visitors’ two senior offensive options, Arthur and Weston McKennie may have to fight it out for a spot in a midfield-heavy system.

Prediction Analysis

With Juve’s continued absenteeism in the final third and defensive third, Villarreal, led by Danjuma, could see a huge opportunity to grab the upper hand in the tie during their current hot streak.

The Bianconeri are not to be overlooked, but their troubles without a full squad were clear in the Torino derby draw, and we can see Emery’s Villarreal snatching a narrow first-leg lead.

Our prediction is Villarreal 2-1 Juventus.

Possible Lineup

Villarreal: Asenjo; Foyth, Albiol, Torres, Pedraza; Trigueros, Capoue, Parejo; Chukwueze, Dia, Danjuma;

Juventus: Szczesny; Cuadrado, Danilo, De Ligt, Sandro; Locatelli, Zakaria, Rabiot; Arthur; Morata, Vlahovic;

  • Champions League; Villarreal vs Juventus
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