Legends of the Goal
Juventus FC prepare for FC Bayern Munich in Champions League, Quarterfinal, 1st Leg
Allianz Arena, Munich – Look up “experience” in the Italian football dictionary. There is no definition, just pictures of Gianluigi Buffon and Andrea Pirlo. If you follow your international football, then those two men need no words.
Both have played on the world’s biggest stages, be it the World Cup, the European championships, the Champions League and in one of the best leagues, the Italian Serie A. Together, Buffon and Pirlo won the 2006 World Cup after penalties against France, Pirlo converted a penalty and Buffon the goalkeeper making the key saves. Pirlo has won two Champions League titles with AC Milan in 2003 and 2007, perhaps a third if not for that tremendous comeback by Liverpool in 2005. He brings that experience as one of the best midfielders in the game into this quarterfinal matchup, along with Buffon’s solid play between the posts, with confidence that they can upset FC Bayern Munich at home.
Sport Eagle TV Preview – Bayern Munich vs. Juventus, Champions League, Quarterfinal, 1st Leg
Yes, Bayern are the favorites, considered one of the best teams in Europe at the moment. They will win another Bundesliga title, they are in the semifinals of the German domestic cup, and they are hoping to return to the Champions League final after the shock last year in Munich. The Bavarian giants are back on form, ready to make up for their last Champions League home match, a 2-0 loss against Arsenal, after a 9-2 white-washing of Hamburg on Saturday.
If there is one thing Juventus has on top of the experience is no fear. Both Buffon and Pirlo know how to win in Germany and against Bayern. Pirlo scored a goal back in April 2007’s quarterfinal matchup against Bayern, moving on and towards the title with a 4-2 aggregate. He was also part of the team that swept Munich in the group stage in 2002.
Buffon has a consistent record against Bayern, but suffered a tough 4-1 loss the last time he faced them. He is in form this Champions League season, playing every minute for Juventus, conceding only four goals, the lowest amongst teams still playing in the competition.
And if both Pirlo and Buffon need another notch on their belts, they can add another victory against a Bayern side on the same soil as the World Cup in 2006 and against most of the same teams members of the German squad from the Euros semifinals in 2012. Experience for the Italians can end another title dream for Bayern.
Kickoff of this epic battle is at 20:45 CET.
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