Juventus will be taking a trip to Germany as they face Bayer Leverkusen in the upcoming Champions League fixture in a game which will be the most important for the hosts. The Italian giants have already qualified to the next round by registering 13 points on board and could rest quite a few first-team players. Meanwhile, Leverkusen comes in third in Group D with six points to their tally while being a point behind Atletico Madrid.
Peter Bosz’ side will be eying nothing short but a win against Juve while also hoping for Atletico Madrid to drop points against Lokomotiv Moscow.
Date- Thursday, December 12 | Kick-Off- 1:30 AM (IST) | Venue- BayArena
Nadiem Amiri should be available after undergoing suspension. Charles Aranguiz and Karim Bellarabi are a booking away from a one-match ban. Kai Havertz has returned from injury and his addition to the side will be a massive boost. Jonathan Tah is also expected to start for the hosts. Mitchell Weiser and Joel Pohjanpalo are ruled out due to injuries.
With Juventus securing a spot in the Round of 16, Maurizio Sarri should bring in changes in the lineup. There is a possibility of Cristiano Ronaldo being rested, while, Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuain partner along in the forward line. Juan Cuadrado was shown a red in the 3-1 defeat to Lazio on Saturday but could be made available on the team sheet against Leverkusen. Sami Khedira, Aaron Ramsey, Giorgio Chiellini, Mattia Perin and Douglas Costa are long term absentees due to injuries.
Bayer Leverkusen- Hradecky; Wendell, Bender, Tah, Bender; Baumgartinger, Aranguiz; Bailey, Havertz, Bellarabi; Volland
Juventus- Buffon; Danilo, Bonucci, Rugani, Sandro; Bentacur, Pjanic, Rabiot; Bernardeschi; Higuain, Dybala
Kevin Volland will be the main man in attack for Leverkusen. The German international has five goals and five assists in the league, while also having scored a goal in the Champions League this season.
Paulo Dybala will look to strike some authority if given the opportunity to start for Juventus. The 26-year-old has three goals and an assist in the Champions League this season, while also having scored four goals in Serie A.
Sven Bender has been one of the standouts in Leverkusen’s backline. Bender has a goal in the Champions League while averaging 2.5 tackles per game and also has a pass accuracy of 93%
Gonzalo Higuain can be a threat along with Dybala in the forward line. Higuain has a goal and two assists in the Champions League while also having scored four goals in Serie A this season.
With Bayern Leverkusen looking to seal a win against Juventus, this might be their finest chance as the Italian club is expected to rest a few players. The hosts might just nick a win here.
Goalkeeper- L Hradecky
Defenders- S Bender (C), J Tah, L Bonucci, A Sandro
Midfielders- K Havertz, L Bailey, F Bernadschi
Forwards- K Volland, G Higuain, P Dybala
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