UEFA Champions League: Valencia vs Juventus preview


Cristiano Ronaldo travels back to a familiar place for his Champions League debut with Juventus as the Bianconeri visit Valencia at Mestalla Stadium on Wednesday. The two teams have never met before in an European competition, but both have plenty of continental experience. Valencia have won just seven of their 22 matches against Italian sides in Europe, while Juventus have tasted victory 20 times out of their 58 matches against Spanish opposition.

Valencia had a rough start to the season, they were expecting to perform a lot better after their very solid campaign last year. They are still looking to record their first victory of the season, the four LaLiga matches so far have only brought them a loss and three draws. Last week they were held to a goalless draw at home by Betis. Geoffrey Kondogbia was forced off the pitch after just 14 minutes against Betis and will most likely be unavailable for Wednesday's match, while Francis Coquelin and Ezequiel Garay are doubts.

Juventus are enjoying a perfect start to the season, with four wins out of four matches and Cristiano Ronaldo that seems to have settled well into his new team. The Portuguese superstar scored both goals in last weekend's 2-1 home victory over Sassuolo and is expected to lead the team in the Champions League as well. Mattia De Sciglio and Andrea Barzagli are injury doubts for the Italian side, while Leonardo Spinazzola was not included in the Champions League squad as he is expected to be out for quite some time. Brazilian forward Douglas Costa was sent off at the weekend after spitting at an opponent and he might be cast off the squad by head coach Massimiliano Allegri.

Probable line-ups:

Valencia: Neto - Piccini, Paulista, Diakhaby, Gaya - Soler, Parejo, Wass, Cheryshev - Moreno, Gameiro

Juventus: Szczesny - Cancelo, Bonucci, Chiellini, Sandro - Khedira, Pjanic, Matuidi - Dybala - Mandzukic, Ronaldo

My prediction: Juventus to win 1-0, the Italians seem in better shape than Valencia at this moment of the season.

Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:

Valencia win - 4.75
Draw - 3.60
Juventus win - 1.85

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