Barcelona vs Juventus: A final for the ages
The wait is finally over, as Barcelona and Juventus are about to take center stage in Berlin and fight for the UEFA Champions League 2014-15 title. Both teams are chasing the much-wanted treble this season, after havingÂ dominated all their competition domestically, with BarĂ§a clinching La Liga and Copa del Rey titles last month and Juventus wrapping up another Serie A and Coppa de Italia trophies a few weeks ago.
This year’s Champions League final will take place inÂ the Olympiastadion in Berlin (Germany), but the road to this magical stage was far from being easy for any of these sides. While BarĂ§a had to get rid of extremelyÂ tough competititors such as Manchester City, PSG and Bayern Munich in the previous rounds, Juventus‘ campaign wasn’t exactly easy either. The Italian champions may have gotten a softer ride, but they still had toÂ attestÂ their superiority against the likes of Borussia Dortmund, AS Monaco and the last year’s winners,Â Real Madrid. In the end, both Barcelona and Juventus are worthy finalists and it’s all set to what could be a final for the ages.
Barcelona comes into this gameÂ in their full strength, as they have no one in their squad currently injured or suspended for the final. After a lot of rotations throughout the season, Luis Enrique can pick his best starting XI in his most important game in his managerial career andÂ given the incredible form in which some of his players are, that certainly can’t be good news for Juventus‘ fans.
Juventus on the other hand,Â had an upset earlier this weekÂ when their center defender Giorgio Chiellini was ruled out due to a calf injury. The Italians were already deprived of CĂˇceres and most likely of Barzagli as well. With BarĂ§a‘s upfront trio in such great form, Juventus better step up their game and play tightÂ throughout the whole final in order to avoid being crushed by Messi, SuĂˇrez and Neymar‘s brilliance.
Earlier this Friday, Neymar was one of Barcelona‘s men picked to show up in the press-conference room inÂ Berlin andÂ preview the final. The Brazilian didn’t hide his excitement and naturally assumedÂ that this will be theÂ most important game of his career so far…
Neymar: “I’ve played in many finals before, but this is by far the most important one. It’s the most important game of my life and I hopeÂ I can enjoy it. This was a dream I’ve always had since I was a child and now I just hope I can finally win a Champions League title. This is theÂ best moment in my career and I can’t wait to have the chance to kiss the trophy!”, stated the 23-year oldÂ Brazilian.
This Barcelona vs Juventus game will kickoff at 20:45 (GMT+2), local time in Berlin, Germany. You can watch it onlineÂ through one of the many live streaming links that will be publishedÂ on Ronaldo7.net,Â but obviously also on TV. The Champions League final will be coveredÂ by Sky Sports (1 and 5) and ITV 1 in the UK, and on FOX Soccer in the US.
Barcelona predicted XI:Â Ter Stegen; Alves, PiquĂ©, Mascherano, Alba; RakitiÄ‡, Busquets, Iniesta; Lionel Messi, Neymar, SuĂˇrez.
Juventus predicted XI:Â Buffon; Lichtsteiner, Bonucci, Barzagli, Evra; Marchisio, Pirlo, Paul Pogba; Vidal; Morata, Carlos TĂ©vez.
Sources: uefa.com / sports.yahoo.com / ronaldo7.net / juventus.com