Manchester United was seconds away from pulling a huge upset at Stamford Bridge, but ultimately settled for a 2-2 draw at Chelsea this past weekend. But The Red Devils need to conquer a win if they want to keep their chances to qualify out of the Champions League Group Stage alive. This Tuesday, The Red Devils will host Juventus, arguably their toughest opponent to date in the competition. A win would put United in first place, and in an excellent position to reach the knockout stages.
Read on to find out everything you need to know prior to Tuesday’s contest:
There are not many updates when it comes to injuries and team news on Manchester United’s front. One surprising absence will be the one of Alexis Sanchez, who has been left out of the squad due to a coach’s decision. Elsewhere, the likes of Scott McTominay, Phil Jones, Diogo Dalot, Marouane Fellaini and Jesse Lingard were not pictured training with the side on Monday, so they have been left out as well. The same goes for Marcos Rojo, who’s rehabbing from a long-term injury, and Antonio Valencia who will be, at best, a late-game decision. As a result, The Red Devils will be quite depleted ahead of this tie.
Meanwhile, Juventus do have a few injury concerns of their own. Emre Can, Mario Mandzukic and Sami Khedira have not been included on the list for this game, while youngster Moise Kean earned a spot. So has Cristiano Ronaldo, who will once again return to Old Trafford but now defending the reigning Serie A champions.
Manchester United have been extremely inconsistent this season. However, they secured a 3-2 win over Newcastle before the international, and earned a 2-2 draw at Chelsea this past weekend. There are lots of areas where the side need to improve before calling themselves a reliable Top 4 contender, and this game will be the perfect chance to show United they can still compete with any team in the world. Especially after drawing their most recent Champions League match against Valencia (0-0) at Old Trafford. For what is worth, Jose Mourinho’s men own a W1, D1 mark in the Champions League thus far.
Juventus, on the other hand, once again look like the team to beat in the Italian Serie A. The Old Lady currently top the Serie A standings with 25 points (W8, D1, L0) and remain as the lone undefeated side in the competition. As if that wasn’t enough, they have also won their first two Champions League matches without conceding a goal; 2-0 to Valencia and 3-0 vs. Young Boys. Therefore, they own a W10, D1 mark in competitive matches during the current term.
What is our Champions League record against Juventus?
We have played the Bianconeri eight times in the UEFA Champions League: 1996/97, 1997/98, 1998/99 and 2002/03. There have been four wins for Manchester United, three wins for Juventus, and one draw. When it comes to goals scored over that span, The Reds have scored 12 and the Italians, nine.
Undoubtedly, this is going to be a tough game for Manchester United. Juventus are in top form, and The Red Devils have lots of concerns related to injuries. As such, I wouldn’t be surprised if this one ends with a draw. United have been inspired by their recent form and should offer plenty of fight. However, cracking Juventus’ defensive line will be quite hard, even when playing at home.