April 28, 2017

Juventus coach still sees room for improvement

21 April 2017, 07:54 | Joan Schultz

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MSN- cropped

"It felt like the match could have gone on a lot longer without us conceding".

"Barcelona failing to score goals over two legs is nearly unheard of". Not conceding a goal against this trio (MSN), against this team is very hard and I believe this is our great merit.

But on his return to Camp Nou on Wednesday, the veteran right back cast all that aside. Then, of course, there is one-word that strikes fear into anyone defending a 3-0 lead: Istanbul. Not after PSG. Everybody knows that, regardless of their flaws, this Barcelona team is capable of it. If those two are at their best, you would still fancy Barcelona against most teams.

After last week's 3-0 victory in Turin, it was Juve's attackers who were drawing the plaudits — specifically Paulo Dybala, who scored twice. They move the ball around so quickly and only a great Juventus could've qualified. "There were certain periods, particularly in defence, when we showed we're a real team". Do that, and you're dead. Juventus were never afraid.

Proceedings will begin at 11.00am BST, with the draw following shortly after. "Signed Leonardo B." Bonucci was as good as his word.

With half an hour remaining and his side still needing three goals to force extra time, Barca coach Luis Enrique replaced midfielder Ivan Rakitic with striker Paco Alcacer, but the fact was that most of his side's efforts continued to be from outside of the penalty area.

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Allegri, however, said that Juventus could have made life easier for themselves if they had taken advantage of the space Barcelona offered them as the game wore on.

"Everyone had a great game today", he marvelled.

"Everyone played well, the centre-halves especially, including those that came on late like [Andrea] Barzagli".

It's the first time the Brazil global had come back to his much-loved former club since departing for the Serie A champions last summer. Neymar has to look at it as a learning curve.

Alves, who was seen comforting a distraught Neymar after the 0-0 draw at the Camp Nou on Wednesday, revealed that while it was painful seeing his former teammates so upset, he was also happy with his team's achievement.

"We tried with all our might, but we couldn't find the route to goal", said Barca boss Luis Enrique, who has announced he is leaving the club at the end of the season.

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