Today sees the biggest game in the European football calendar as Italian giants Juventus take on the current holders and most successful club in European football…. Real Madrid.
Confirmed Line ups:
Juventus: Buffon; Sandro, Bonucci, Chiellini, Barzagli; Pjanic, Khedira; Mandzukic, Dybala, Alves; Higuain
Real Madrid: Navas; Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Kroos, Casemiro, Modric; Isco, Benzema, Cristiano Ronaldo Daily Express
Real Madrid have a fully fit squad and manager Zinedine Zidane has included his son, Enzo. How they line up remains to be seen, but Welshman Gareth Bale will be hoping to shine on home turf with the game taking place at the millennium stadium in Cardiff. The former Tottenham man has been out for the past month and it will be a straight choice between him and Isco to start.
Juventus look to have a full squad to choose from with Sami Khedira returning from injury. Long serving veteran keeper Gianluigi Buffon may see this as his last chance to lift the ‘Cup with the big ears’.
How they reached the final
Juventus came through their group stage with 14 points having faced Sevilla, Lyon and Dinamo Zagreb. They notably won all 3 away matches. In the last 16 they defeated Porto 3-0 on aggregate. 2-0 in Portugal and 1-0 at home. The last 8 saw the Italians face Reals arch rival Barcelona. A stunning 3-0 victory at Juventus Stadium put them in a great position. They then comfortably defended the lead with a 0-0 draw at the Camp Nou. The Semi Final stage saw a 4-1 aggregate victory over Monaco.
Madrid saw off Legia Warsaw, Borrussia Dortmund and Sporting Lisbon to qualify from their group with 12 points. The Spaniards them came through the round of 16 with a comprehensive 6-2 aggregate win over Napoli before a quarter final date with Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich. Again Real turned on the style to clinch a semi final spot with a 6-3 victory over the two games. The Semi final draw paired them with local rivals Atletico. A comfortable 3-0 1st leg home win put one foot one the plane to Cardiff. Despite going 2-0 down in the 2nd leg, Real recovered to get a vital away goal back. And although they suffered a 2-1 defeat on the night, it was enough to send them to yet another final and an opportunity to defend their title.
So where can I watch it?
If you’re not lucky enough to have a ticket in Cardiff. The game is being shown in the uk by BT Sport. It will be available on freeview and is also being broadcast on YouTube. For other countries please check your local listings.
Who do you think will be victorious this evening? Will it be the Blancos looking for a 12th title or can the bianconeri be successful for a 3rd time. Vote here via Twitter. Maybe follow us and retweet while you’re there 👍