Soccer fans across the world will be glued to their television’s as the best two club teams in Europe and typically in the world face off in a clash of the titans on June 6, 2015 in Berlin, Germany. In a classic duel of a high octane offense in Barcelona versus a very discipline and staunch defense in Juventus. Barcelona has a fierce three headed attack of 3 of the games most prolific scorers currently. Luis Suarez, Lionel Messi, and Neymar Jr. are goal merchants so Juventus will definitely have their work cut out trying to contain the three soccer superstars. On the other side Juventus is a scrappy group of technically sound footballers. Notable players that will need to dazzle for Juve to fair well against mighty Barca are Carlos Tevez, Paul Pogba, and Giorgio Chiellini. Both teams had a long journey to this point with Juventus defeating favorites Real Madrid who are led by Cristiano Ronaldo. Real Madrid’s former player Alvaro Morata proved to be the X factor versus his former club scoring in both of the legs helping Juve to defeat Real 3-2 on aggregate (aggregate is total goals between two matches). Barcelona defeated Mighty Bayern Munich in order to reach the finals 5-3 on aggregate. So both squads deservedly earned the right to play for the crown of world’s best football club in Europe!!!!
Both teams have enjoyed success domestically as well on top of their Champion League success. Juventus have been crowned champions of the Italian Serie A division in impressive fashion 15 points clear of second place AS Roma, that is a substantial lead compared to the 2nd place team. Barcelona on the other hand always are in a two horse race with Real Madrid for the La Liga crown and they have edged out Madrid in this year’s race by 4pts which is all that is needed with only 1 game remaining. Even if they lose they will still have more points than Madrid who can only close the gap by one point. As it stands now Barca has 93 pts. and Real has 89 pts. with one game left. In the Champions League of the 28 goals Barcelona have scored Neymar, Messi, and Suarez account for 25 of those goals which is a staggering 89% of Barcelona’s goals. Needless to say with everything on the line Juve needs to stop the unstoppable trio… very much an anomaly but something always has to give.
Juventus definitely has a very unique tale in their road to Berlin. In 2006 Juventus was involved in a betting scandal that saw both the titles they won in 2005 and 2006 stripped as well as being relegated to Serie B after being crowned champions in Serie A. It is known as the Calciopoli scandal and basically what went down is Juventus club officials appointed referees that they had good rapport with to call games in their favor. As a result the club was dropped to Serie B and on top of that were deducted 9 points in Serie B. So many of the star players they had at the time were not about to play in the “D-League” as well as face pay cuts. So the likes of French defender Lilian Thuram, Swedish superstriker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Czech midfielder Pavel Nedved, and Italian star defender Fabio Cannovaro all departed the club. Fast forward 9 years later and Juventus have climbed back to Serie A and have been crowned champions and a lot of the members of that Italian World Cup winning team like Pirlo and Gianluigi Buffon are returning to the venue where they had World Cup triumph in Berlin back in 2006! Another twist in the plot sees Giorgio Chiellini the star defender for Juve defending Luis Suarez the player that infamously bite Chiellini in the past summer’s World Cup in Brazil. It will be very intriguing to see just how both players respond to each other after such a bizarre occurrence in the summer of 2014.
I am predicting a Barcelona victory! I think Juventus will start off the game too tentative and rely on Pogba, Morata, and Tevez to do a majority of the attacking while everyone else defends and accounts for the 3 studs; Messi, Neymar, and Luis Suarez. Juventus will have to do a great deal of counter attacking just cause Barca is the best team at possesing the ball. Players like Iniesta and Xavi fly under the radar constantly but are both one of the best midfielders the planet has to offer. So expect Barca to have 65% of the ball possesion; with that said Juve will have limited chances so I expect Barcelona to win by 2 goals to 1. So it will definitely be a wonderful spectacle to behold as both these teams battle it out for top club supremacy! -BoSo
BoSo’s Projected Championship Fixture Line-Ups:
Barcelona Starting 11… (G)Marc Andre Ter Stegen (D)Jordi Alba (D)Gerard Pique (D)Javier Mascherano (D)Dani Alves (M)Andre Iniesta (M)Xavi (M)Ivan Rakitic (F)Neymar (F)Luis Suarez (F)Messi
Manager: Luis Enrique 4-3-3
Juventus Starting 11… (G)Gianluigi Buffon (D)Patrice Evra (D)Giorgio Chiellini (D)Angelo Ogbonna (D)Stephan Lichtsteiner (M)Kwadwo Asamoah (M)Arturo Vidal (M)Andrea Pirlo (M)Paul Pogba (M)Claudio Marchisio (F)Carlos Tevez
Manager: Massimiliano Allegri 4-5-1
Top 12 Champions League Goal Scorers:
1. Lionel Messi (BAR) 10
2. Cristiano Ronaldo (MAD) 10
3. Neymar (BAR) 9
4. Luiz Adriano (SHT) 9
5. Carlos Tevez (Juv) 7
6. Jackson Martinez (FCP) 7
7. Thomas Muller (FCB) 7
8. Edison Cavani (PSG) 6
9. Sergio Aguero (MC) 6
10. Karim Benzema (MAD) 6
11. Luis Suarez (BAR) 6
12. Robert Lewandowski (FCB) 6
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