Tottenham and Juventus Ready for Battle

Round of 16 Preview (2nd Leg)

Tottenham Hotspur will be quietly confident of seeing off Juventus in the second leg of their last 16 clash at Wembley on Wednesday night.

Homegrown hero Harry Kane continues to defy his early critics and got the comeback underway with his goal in the first leg of this match-up and is currently on a impressive 35 goals in 37 matches for Spurs this season, including seven in six Champions League games.

Paulo Dybala was absent from the first leg with a hamstring injury but has been back in action and form in the last three games for Juve. He scored a 90th minute winner in the defeat of Lazio last Saturday. In his third season with Juventus, the talented Italian has scored 45 goals in his 86 Serie A appearances in total. He is currently on 18 for the season in all competitions.

While Tottenham come into this game in fourth place on the Premier League standings, 17 games unbeaten, their Italian opponents are second in Serie A without a defeat in their last 20 matches.

Spurs eased past lowly Huddersfield Town last time out as Juve narrowly defeated a fourth-placed Lazio.

In the build-up to this clash, Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino said: "Winning one title would be fantastic for everyone and mean a lot because, if we can win some trophies along the way, it will be complete – different from other clubs.
"The players would be heroes because they will have competed with these big sides. We can’t set a limit. I don’t do that. I am a dreamer. Every chance you have to play, you need to go as far as possible.”
"We have improved the team every season step by step. Maybe no big step but a little step every season. You can see that the team is more mature and more competitive every season. We improved our reputation in Europe after the group stage. People started to respect Tottenham more.”
He added: "We must not think too much about the consequences of the result. We need to feel free.”

And Massimiliano Allegri, who saw his side surrender a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 in their first leg, added that it is important for Juve to take their chances.

He said: "I don’t know how Spurs are going to play. We’re going to have to be a lot better technically than we were in the first leg, especially in the second half.
"It will be like a final, in a way, because we have to get a result otherwise we are going out. 
"We created chances at home in the first leg and we’ll have to do the same tomorrow night. The most important thing is that we be positive.
"I think it's right to say that best team will win. It's about taking your chances. This is what happens in games at a high level. 
On his strikeforce, with Gonzalo Higuain a doubt, he concluded: "Dybala, Higuain and Douglas Costa may not all play together, but they could all feature at some stage. However, they are the only three attackers I've got left, so it could be that they all may need to start."

In team news, Tottenham have Toby Alderweireld injured and Serge Aurier suspended, while Juventus are missing Juan Cuadrado, Federico Bernardeschi and Mario Mandzukic. Mattia de Sciglio has recovered from a hamstring injury and could feature.

© TEAMtalk Media

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