After a disappointing league game in Malaga, Luis Enrique and his men traveled to Turin to face Juventus FC in the first leg of the Champions League Quarter-Finals. Barcelona was defeated (0-3) after another poor performance in an away game in the Champions League. These two legendary clubs last met in the 2014-15 Champions League Final were FC Barcelona won (3-1) in Berlin, making it their fifth Champions League trophy.
Argentinian international Paulo Dybala scored two great goals to give Juventus a two-goal lead in the first half of the match. Giorgio Chiellini would then make Juventus’ third goal from a header in a corner kick for Juventus. Andres Iniesta had an enormous opportunity to at least give Barcelona an away goal, but a motivated Gianluigi Buffon saved his shot. Other than that, Barcelona had three more shots on goal but their finishing was dreadful.
Before the match against Barcelona, Juventus were unbeaten in their last 17 Champions League home games. Juventus also has not conceded a single goal in 351 minutes, last time they conceded was against Sevilla FC back in November when the Italian club last conceded.
Barcelona is in deep trouble after another humiliating performance in the Champions League. However, the Catalan club played much better in Turin then when they got demolished (0-4) in Paris. They are going to need another miracle for them to pass to the Semi-Finals. However, this one does not seem likely to be achievable.
Juventus FC has to be one of the best teams in Europe right now. The attacking duo of Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala is potentially one of the best attacks in football right now. Gonzalo Higuain hast 23 goals in the Calcio A and Paulo Dybala has eight. Dybala shows a lot of promise and it looks like he is only starting to make his real mark in European Football. Their midfield consists of players like Pjanic, Khedira, Marchisio, Cuadrado. These are all players that link up together and play extraordinarily well. However, Juventus’ most important part of the team is the defense. Chiellini, Bonnuci, Dani Alves, Alex Sandro, Barzagli, and Benatia. All these players are world-class defenders and all of them do not even get to play together sometimes.
Barcelona is going to have to give it their all since they have everything to lose. This weekend, Barcelona defeated Real Sociedad in the Camp Nou (3-2). Messi scored twice and assisted Paulo Alcacer. The Catalan club showed a much better performance from the midfield and the attack. However, it still looks like the defense is suffering. Samuel Umtiti scored and own-goal and the Barcelona defense allowed an avoidable goal right after Lionel Messi’s second goal just before half-time.
Next week, FC Barcelona plays against Juventus FC for the second leg of the Champions League Quarter-Finals. However, this game will not be the only difficult and important game of the week. Next Sunday, Barcelona visits the Santiago Bernabeu to play against eternal rivals, Real Madrid. Next week, Barcelona’s fate in the Champions League and La Liga will be determined.