Juventus vs FC Porto preview

March 13, 2017
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Taking a two-goal lead into the second leg, Juventus have all but secured their place in the quarter-finals, although the Bianconeri are expected to take the return match very seriously.

The pressure will be on FC Porto, who clearly missed a chance in the first match, with Alex Telles’s sending off making all the difference.

Having made a giant step towards sixth consecutive Serie A trophy thanks to yet another controversial triumph, the Bianconeri can now focus on their Champions League campaign.

This is one major trophy Juventus have failed to win in recent years, finishing as runners up two years ago after losing to Barcelona in the final.

Max Allegri’s side did well to record a 2-0 triumph over FC Porto at Estadio do Dragao, as they eventually took advantage of Alex Telles’s sending off, and they are now 1.70 (7/10) to win the return match as well.

It is important to note though that Juventus are not exactly on top of their game at the moment, as witnessed by under-par performances in matches against Udinese and AC Milan.

While they could only muster a 1-1 draw at Friuli, the Bianconeri needed a controversial penalty deep into injury time to see off AC Milan last weekend.

Juventus welcomes back important defender Giorgio Chiellini to the side, while Stefano Sturaro is not yet ready for selection even though he has made progress of late.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Buffon – Lichtsteiner, Bonucci, Chiellini, Alex Sandro – Khedira, Pjanic – Cuadrado, Dybala, Mandzukic – Higuain.

FC Porto were quite fortunate to be placed in the easiest Champions League group, but at least they allowed no surprises and progressed to the last 16 stage.

The Dragons had a decent start to the Juventus game, showing they are not afraid of their more illustrious opponents, but Alex Telles left his teammates high and dry as he was sent off before the half-hour mark.

Even though FC Porto played well with ten men, they eventually conceded two late goals and now face a mountain to climb in the return leg.

The good news is that the Dragons have won each of their last three games without conceding, scoring 12 goals in the process, and that will give them confidence heading into the Turin clash.

Head coach Nuno Espirito Santo received another major boost as Hector Herrera and Jesus Corona both resumed full training, but Alex Telles is suspended.

Probable starting line-up (4-1-3-2): Casillas – Pereira, Felipe, Marcano, Layun – Danilo – Herrera, Corona, Brahimi – Andre Silva, Tiquinho.

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