Real football is finally back; the Serie A and, of course, the Champions League. As we know, COVID will play a major role for all teams this season. Teams will often have to do without players, whoever can best adapt to the current situation will have the best season.
Crotone vs Juventus
Crotone are back in the Series A after 2 years of absence. The team from the south has completely missed its start this season. After 3 matches they are last in the Serie A with 0 points. Especially defensively Crotone has a serious problem with 10 goals conceded including 4 against Genoa.
Crotone often chooses to play with 4 or 5 at the back, despite the fact that they choose to do so they have defensive problems. So our mission will be clear: build up patiently waiting for that chance to break the game open. Our last match at Crotone ended in a 1-1 with a header goal from Alex Sandro.
Prediction: Crotone 0-2 Juventus
Dynamo Kyiv vs Juventus
The Champions League, the trophy that every Juventus fan wants to win. The group looks "easy" on paper, but as the past has shown, a Champions League match is never easy.
On paper this match may seem relatively easy, but Kyiv is an organised team with experience in Europe. Dynamo easily qualified for the final round of the Champions League. AZ Alkmaar was simply put aside at home with a 2-0 victory. And KAA Gent was no match either, the team was sent home 5-1 over 2 matches.
The competition in Ukranie is already 5 matches away, with 3 wins and 2 draws Kyiv have started good to the season. With the 3 convincing wins in the Champions League preliminaries, the club has certainly not missed its start.
What makes the club so interesting is that they spread their goals over the whole team, which makes it difficult to pick one real threat.
Prediction: Dynamo Kyiv 1-2 Juventus
Juventus vs Verona
Back home, as we know a "fortress", Verona home is historically never a problem for Juventus. Last season Verona was certainly the surprise of the Serie A, Juric made of Verona a very solid team. Many thought that with the departure of Amrabat and Kumbulla the team would have a hard time but nothing seems to be further from the truth.
The team had an excellent start, with 6 points out of 9. They seem to be on their way to an extra year in Serie A. Even if this includes a 3-0 victory through the jury against Roma. But also in this match they held their ground relatively easily.
Verona is known as a team that is difficult to break open, the team is very disciplined. But at home there should be no excuses, we have to be on them from the start and expect I this to happen.
Prediction: Juventus 3-0 Verona
Juventus vs Barcelona
It does not get any better, Juventus vs Barcelona, Ronaldo vs Messi, Pjanic vs Arthur,... The game the whole world wants to see, the question remains whether Ronaldo will be there. As mentioned before, COVID will have a big impact on and off the field this season.
Of course everybody wants Ronaldo to be there, not because it is against Messi but because he is Mister Champions League and without any doubt the most important player in the club. He scored 100% of our knock-out goals in the last 2 seasons, to say he is important is an understatement.
Barcelona comes from an awful season, from a humiliation against Bayern to a trainer change to the whole Messi saga. Koeman goes for the 4-2-3-1. The man of the moment is surprisingly (or not) not Messi but young star Ansu Fati.
Perhaps the most surprising thing is how Coutinho found his place in the team, his first period with Barca was not good. His loan move to Bayern was a world of difference, especially after lockdown in the Champions League we saw the Coutinho from Liverpool a player with so much talent that you always have to keep an eye on.
I am therefore expecting a real European game, a game that is open where defending might become an 'afterthought'. Also because it is only match day 2, both teams will go for the win without thinking too much.
Prediction: Juventus 3-1 Barcelona
By: Aleandro Fancello (https://twitter.com/aleandrographic?s=20)