In an intriguing first-leg clash in the Champions League’s Round of 16, this Wednesday sees Italian giants Juventus travel to France to take on Lyon. Both teams qualified from their respective groups with ease; Juventus topped Group D, winning 5 of their 6 games and drawing the other while conceding just 4 goals, while Lyon qualified from Group G in second place behind RB Leipzig – after defeating the impressive Bundesliga side 0-2 in Germany.
The Old Lady will undoubtedly be the favourites in this tie given their experience and firepower, but two domestic losses thus far in 2020 show that they’re not impossible to beat. Therefore, Lyon can at least have some hope coming into this one.
Lyon vs. Juventus Head-to-Head
Les Gones have taken on Juventus on a couple of occasions in recent seasons, and it’s never gone well for them; the French side were eliminated from 2013-14’s Europa League after losing both legs to the Italian giants, while the 2016-17 Champions League saw them drawn in the same group; Lyon took a draw in the Allianz Stadium but lost at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais, and later failed to make the knockout stages.
Recent domestic form for the two sides has been relatively similar, although Juventus have certainly been more impressive across 2019-20 as a whole, losing just 3 games.
Lyon form guide: D-L-W-D-W
Juventus form guide: W-L-D-W-W
Lyon vs. Juventus team news
Maurizio Sarri will be unable to call upon the talents of Sami Khedira, Douglas Costa, Merih Demiral and Miralem Pjanic, all of whom remain sidelined with long-term injuries. Gonzalo Higuain may also be a doubt following his recent back injury.
Injured: Sami Khedira, Douglas Costa, Merih Demiral, Miralem Pjanic
Doubtful: Gonzalo Higuain
Lyon’s major injury concern remains Memphis Depay; the Dutch winger will be out for the rest of the season following his knee injury – and the same can be said for Jeff Reine-Adelaide and Oumar Solet.
Injured: Memphis Depay, Jeff Reine-Adelaide, Oumar Solet
Lyon vs. Juventus Predicted XI
Juventus predicted XI (4-4-2): Wojciech Szczesny, Danilo, Matthijs De Ligt, Leonardo Bonucci, Alex Sandro, Juan Cuadrado, Aaron Ramsey, Rodrigo Bentancur, Blaise Matuidi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala
Lyon vs. Juventus Prediction
This could be a tougher match than expected for Juventus, as they’ve shown some vulnerability in 2020 thus far, but it’s hard to look past Maurizio Sarri’s side coming away with the victory they need.
Lyon just haven’t been that impressive during the current campaign and Rudi Garcia’s men are without two of their best attackers in Memphis and Reine-Adelaide. Cristiano Ronaldo, in particular, loves to score in the Champions League, and it’s easy to imagine him adding to his overall tally on Wednesday.
Prediction: Lyon 0-2 JuventusPublished 24 Feb 2020, 10:00 IST