By 90Min
February 18, 2019

Atletico Madrid will welcome Serie A leaders Juventus to the Wanda Metropolitano on Wednesday night, for the first leg of their intriguing Champions League last 16 encounter.

The match will be the first meeting between the sides since the 2014/15 campaign, which saw both teams drawn into the same Champions League group. It is Atletico who will have the fondest of memories from those matches, with Los Rojiblancos winning at the Vicente Calderon, before drawing in Turin.

Diego Simeone's side will come into the tie on the back of a 1-0 win against Rayo Vallecano on Saturday, with a strike from French attacker Antoine Griezmann enough to give them all three points at Estadio de Vallecas, ending a worrying run of two straight league defeats.

Juventus, on the other hand, comfortably beat Frosinone 3-0 at the Juventus Stadium on Friday night to keep up their relentless pace at the top of the Serie A table.

Here is 90min's preview of the first leg of the clash between the two European heavyweights.


Where to Watch


When Is Kick Off? Wednesday 20 February
What Time Is Kick Off? 20:00 (BST)
Where Is it Played? Wanda Metropolitano
TV Channel/Live Stream? BT Sport 3
Referee? Felix Zwayer

Team News


Atletico Madrid's Spain international midfielder Koke is an injury doubt ahead of the game, with the 27-year-old having missed the club's last four league games with a thigh injury.

Simeone will definitely be without French World Cup winner Lucas Hernandez, as the full back missed out on their victory against Rayo Vallecano on Saturday due to the recurrence of a knee injury.

Tullio M. Puglia/GettyImages

Juventus were boosted by some positive injury news after their 3-0 victory over Frosinone on Friday, as Douglas Costa and Daniele Rugani resumed training after both missing the match at the Juventus Stadium. It is unlikely, however, that either will feature on Wednesday in Madrid.

Long term absentee Juan Cuadrado remains unavailable for the Bianconeri, as he continues his rehabilitation from a knee injury.


Predicted Lineups


Atletico Madrid
Oblak; Arias, Godin, Giménez, Filipe Luis; Correa, Saúl Ñíguez, Rodri, Lemar; Griezmann, Costa
Juventus Szczesny; Cancelo, Bonucci, Chiellini, A. Sandro, Bentancur, Pjanic, Matuidi, Dybala, Ronaldo, Mandzukic

Head to Head Record


A history of clashes between the teams makes for rather short and simple reading, as there have only been two previous matches and one solitary goal.

The goal, scored by former Atletico midfielder Arda Turan came in a 1-0 win over Juventus at the Vicente Calderon, as the pair were both resident in Group A of the Champions League back in the 2014/15 season, alongside Olympiacos and Malmo.

OLIVIER MORIN/GettyImages

The return meeting saw Atleti hold Juventus to a goalless draw in Turin, which meant Simeone's side topped the group ahead of their Italian counterparts. 


That season's European campaign did see the Old Lady progress further than Los Colchoneros however, as Atletico lost out to bitter rivals Real Madrid in the quarter finals, whereas Juventus finished runners up, losing to Barcelona in the final in Berlin.


Recent Form


Atletico Madrid have lost more league games in the past three matches than they had in their previous 21 games, with their 1-0 victory against Rayo Vallecano keeping their stuttering title challenge somewhat alive.

Recent defeats against Real Betis and local rivals Real Madrid have put Atleti seven points adrift of Barcelona in the league standings, which could mean that continental success could be Simeone's team's best chance of silverware this campaign.

Juventus remain without defeat in the Italian top flight this season, with victory against Frosinone marking their 21st win of the season.

The concern for Massimiliano Allegri will be his side's cup form heading into the game. Juventus were surprisingly beaten by Swiss side Young Boys in their final group game in December. They also exited the domestic cup at the quarter final stage, as they were thrashed 3-0 by Atalanta in the Coppa Italia in January, ending hopes for a domestic double.

Atletico Madrid
Juventus
Rayo Vallecano 0-1 Atletico Madrid (16/2) Juventus 3-0 Frosinone (15/02)
Atletico Madrid 1-3 Real Madrid (9/2)
Sassuolo 0-3 Juventus (10/02)
Betis 1-0 Atletico Madrid (3/2)
Juventus 3-3 Parma (02/02)
Atletico Madrid 2-0 Getafe (26/1)
Atalanta 3-0 Juventus (30/01)
Huesca 0-3 Atletico Madrid (19/1)
Lazio 1-2 Juventus (27/01)

Prediction


This tie is a very difficult one to call, with both teams having notable European pedigree and comprehensive experience of high pressure Champions League matches.

With Atletico having home advantage in the first leg, they will be slight favourites for this heavyweight clash. 

Prediction: Atletico Madrid 2-1 Juventus

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