Pogba & Martial the key men as Ronaldo returns to Old Trafford – Manchester United vs Juventus Champions League match preview

Posted by

Manchester United vs Juventus TV info, kick off time, predicted line ups

When? Tuesday 23 October, 8pm

Where? Old Trafford, Manchester

What channel? BT Sport 2

Manchester United: De Gea, Lindelof, Smalling, Young, Shaw, Pogba, Matic, Mata, Rashford, Martial, Lukaku

Juventus: Szczesny, Cancelo, Bonucci, Chiellini, Sandro, Pjanic, Matuidi, Bentancur, Dybala, Costa, Ronaldo

MORE: Juventus to open talks over audacious Manchester United transfer raid tonight

Keep an eye on…

Where to start with a game like this?

Cristiano Ronaldo – apparently this guy used to play for Manchester United, scoring lots of goals for them before going on to score even more goals for other major clubs. Our experts are currently investigating this, but if true, he could well be a player worth watching tonight.

In all seriousness, it’s not been the easiest start for Ronaldo at Juventus, but the worry for United is he’s now finding his groove. After no goals in his first three games (sorry United fans, we know this is standard for Romelu Lukaku, but for Ronaldo that counts as a drought and a half) he now has five in his last seven, along with three assists.

ronaldo juventus debut
Cristiano Ronaldo is back at Old Trafford tonight

Paul Pogba – he wasn’t great against Chelsea despite the team generally looking far more convincing. Can he turn it on against the club where he made his name? His old team-mate Leonardo Bonucci won’t be taking him lightly, that’s for sure.

Anthony Martial – a United player who really caught the eye with a brace against the Blues, it’s reported the Frenchman has won Jose Mourinho’s trust and will start this evening. With Alexis Sanchez out and floundering, one senses it’s now or never for Martial to take his chance to stamp his authority on this team.

Form…

The form of the two teams could not be more different going into tonight’s game.

While United have made a poor start and won just once in their last six matches in all competitions, Juventus only dropped points for the first time at the weekend in a 1-1 draw with Genoa.

Before that, it was ten wins in a row for the Italian giants, who now need to take their domestic dominance into Europe as they look to finally win this trophy after a couple of close-calls in recent years.

United can take some heart, however, from an improved display against Chelsea, with Ross Barkley’s goal at the death just denying them what would have probably been a deserved three points.

Last time they met…

These two haven’t played each other in a competitive game since all the way back in 2003. Some of you may remember what was a classic United performance in Turin that night…

In the dugout…

Two managers linked with a change in job for very different reasons. Sack rumours have haunted Mourinho for almost the entire season so far, while Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri continues to be linked with even bigger clubs than his current employers.

jose mourinho man utd
Jose Mourinho is under pressure at Manchester United

The tactical methods of both men tonight don’t exactly promise for the most entertaining, end-to-end game, but, credit where credit’s due, Mourinho had United playing some much improved football against Chelsea, as well as in that second half comeback against Newcastle.

And while Allegri’s Juve side are a clinical, efficient winning machine, that shouldn’t take away from the fact that they also have some world class players capable of putting on a show.

After all, with seven title wins on the bounce you’d play with at least a bit of a swagger by now, wouldn’t you?

MORE: Manchester United must smash transfer record to sign Jose Mourinho’s preferred Paul Pogba replacement

Prediction…

While on paper it seems so easy to just go for a straightforward Juventus win, something tells us there’s a glimmer of hope for the home side here.

pogba fred
Can Manchester United pull off a win against Juventus?

Some new-found confidence was found in an impressive draw at Chelsea, and we know Mourinho still has it in him to motivate a team when their backs are against the wall.

Video footage has also emerged showing Leonardo Bonucci can be a real liability at the back – and this is for a Juventus side playing in a pretty non-competitive Serie A, rather than against players of United’s calibre.

Screw it, we’re sticking our necks out for a 1-0 home win.

Prediction for this big Champions League clash?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

More Stories Jose Mourinho Massimiliano Allegri