Atlético travel to Turin to take on Juventus on Tuesday night, looking to secure top-spot in Group A of the Champions League. Juventus however, still need a point to qualify, and will go all out to ensure victory in the final group match of this year’s campaign.
Kick-off at the Juventus Stadium in Turin is set for 20:45 CEST.
After October’s reverse fixture, which Atleti won 1-0 thanks to a late Arda Turan goal, Juventus need a two-goal win or more to win the group themselves, and set up an ‘easier’ last 16 tie against a runner-up from another group.
Atleti only need to avoid a defeat by two or more to secure top-spot, but they won’t be resting on their laurels, at least according to Koke.
“Juventus have some good players in midfield. We saw this at the Calderón even though Pirlo, a great footballer, was missing,” Koke told the press before the game in Turin.
“But we also have strong players. Players who will run and fight. It’s going to be a very intense game, and we will have to give all that we have to get the victory.”
“Every match, we take to the field to win. We have always done so, and it’s what we’re going to do tomorrow.”
“Playing in this stadium, with this atmosphere, is something special.”
The Juventus Stadium has been a fortress for Juve in the league, and a last minute goal in the 2-1 victory over Torino last week was their 25 win in a row at home in Serie A.
The Old Lady are no pushovers in the Champions League either, and are unbeaten in their last nine European games at home.
In fact, Juve have only lost one European game at home since their home was re-opened as the Juventus Stadium.
Diego Simeone knows how dangerous a Juventus team can be at home.
“I expect a great Juventus team. The one from their best times, because they need to play a great game and win to avoid being knocked out of the Champions League,” Cholo told the media on Monday evening.
It’s going to be a big night, and my players will have to respond well knowing the type of match we are in for.”
“Juventus playing at home is a lot stronger than when they’re playing away. They’re so much stronger when they’re playing in front of their own fans. Tomorrow will be a match very different to the one in Madrid.”
Simeone has to travel to Turin without both Ansaldi and Miranda, who are both recovering from injuries. Lucas once again makes the squad-list, after making his debut for Atleti against L’Hospitalet in the Copa del Rey.
It is likely that Atleti will go with the same eleven that started against Elche, with Griezmann again starting on the bench in a tricky away game.
Carlos Tevez, having been rested for the draw with Fiorentina on the weekend, will return up-front for the bianconeri. A point will sent Juve through, but all three could see them go through top. Atleti just need to avoid a heavy defeat, and continue to show the desire to win that Cholo has instilled in every one of them.
Goalkeepers: Moyá, Oblak
Defenders: Juanfran, Jesús Gámez, Giménez, Godín, Lucas, Siqueira
Midfielders: Gabi, Koke, Mario Suárez, Saúl, Arda Turan, Raúl García, Cristian Rodríguez
Forwards: Mandzukic, Griezmann, Raúl Jiménez, Cerci
You can prepare for the game by reading our one-on-one interview with JuveFC.com, and get their thoughts ahead of tomorrow’s big game under the lights in Turin.