Champions League

Champions League

Real Madrid 4-1 Juventus: Real initially weak down the right, before dominating that flank

June 6, 2017
Real Madrid 4-1 Juventus: Real initially weak down the right, before dominating that flank

Real Madrid became the first club to retain the European Cup in its modern format, after an eventually comfortable 4-1 win in Cardiff. Zinedine Zidane’s major selection dilemma was whether to pick Isco or Gareth Bale – but it seems Bale wasn’t close enough to full fitness to be seriously considered, and therefore Isco continued....
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Monaco 0-2 Juventus: Allegri uses wing-backs and Alves creates both goals for Higuain

May 5, 2017
Monaco 0-2 Juventus: Allegri uses wing-backs and Alves creates both goals for Higuain

Juventus took control of this Champions League semi-final with an impressive 2-0 victory, thanks to two goals from Gonzalo Higuain. Leonardo Jardim’s side featured one surprise – Benjamin Mendy wasn’t fit to start at left-back, so Djibril Sidibe switched to that flank and Nabil Dirar played at right-back. Max Allegri left out right-winger Juan Cuadrado and...
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Juventus 3-0 Barcelona: Juve exploit Barca’s disjointed backline with two fine Dybala strikes

April 12, 2017
Juventus 3-0 Barcelona: Juve exploit Barca’s disjointed backline with two fine Dybala strikes

Juventus take a commanding lead to the Camp Nou for the second leg – and will be confident of faring better than PSG did last month. Max Allegri named his expected side. Mario Mandzukic has been playing on the left in recent weeks, while Daniel Alves faced his former side for the first time. Luis Enrique...
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Dortmund 1-0 Bayern: Tuchel surprises Bayern with a 3-3-2-2 shape

November 23, 2016
Dortmund 1-0 Bayern: Tuchel surprises Bayern with a 3-3-2-2 shape

Dortmund triumphed in the Bundesliga’s showpiece game, courtesy of a first-half goal from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Thomas Tuchel is no stranger to a three-man defence, having played that system the previous weekend against Hamburg in a 5-2 victory. But this was a different shape in midfield, and featured very different personnel too. Julian Weigl, Marcel Schmelzer,...
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Real Madrid 1-1 Atletico Madrid: Real victorious on penalties

May 30, 2016
Real Madrid 1-1 Atletico Madrid: Real victorious on penalties

Atletico Madrid started poorly – but Diego Simeone’s half-time switch put them in charge. Zinedine Zidane named his expected starting XI. There were few selection decisions to make – Cristiano Ronaldo was doubtful but assured of his starting place, even if not 100% fit. Indeed, the more the match continued, the more it became obvious...
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