Tottenham surprised everyone around the footballing world after they finished above the 2 time defending champions Real Madrid and German powerhouse Borussia Dortmund in their 2017/18 UEFA Champions League group H. However, even after all the hard work in the group stage, the reward was hardly worth it for Spurs as Italian Serie A champions Juventus were picked against them for the round of 16.
Tottenham have been great form domestically and will not make it easy for Massimiliano Allegri’s side. However, Juventus themselves are currently unbeaten in 16 matches and not surprising have conceded just one goal in that run. The North London side are a team that is growing in belief with each passing season and they will believe that if their strikers can do the job over the two legs of the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League round of 16, their defence is solid enough to hold back Juventus.
Champions League Round of 16: Juventus News
Massimiliano Allegri’s main concern over the next couple of days will be the fitness of Paulo Dybala. The Argentine is suffering from a hamstring injury right now and will be touch and go for the 1st leg in Turin. Juventus will be hoping that their star striker is fit for the all-important UCL encounter. The 24-year-old has scored 14 goals in the Serie A this season and will prove to be a huge threat if fit.
There are 3 long-term absentees for Juventus as Benedikt Howedes, Juan Cuadrado and Blaise Matuidi are still recovering from their respective injuries.
Champions League Round of 16: Tottenham News
Tottenham will enter the 1st leg high on confidence after defeating their arch-rivals Arsenal last weekend in the North London Derby. They have no serious injury concerns going into the big match. Which means Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen and Son should again line up together in the forward line.
However, one decision that will be a little tricky for Pochettino will be whether to start Toby Alderweireld who has just returned to first-team action. He didn’t play any part against Arsenal, which should make fit and ready to face Juventus in the mid-week.
Champions League Round of 16: Juventus Predicted 11
Buffon; De Sciglio, Benatia, Chiellini, Sandro; Khedira, Pjanic, Marchisio, Higuain, Mandzukic and Dybala.
Champions League Round of 16: Tottenham Predicted 11
Lloris, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Trippier, Davies, Dier, Dembele, Eriksen, Alli, Son and Kane.
Juventus will be favourites going into the 1st leg of the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League Round of 16, especially at home, but they will do well not to take Tottenham lightly. The quartet of Kane, Alli, Eriksen and Son have the capacity to hurt any defence in the world when they’re on song and Pochettino has got his young side believing in themselves, something we could see from their performances in the group stage. However, Juventus have just been lethal at home and with Dybala slotted to return they should have enough to take a lead to Wembley next week.