Juventus needed to beat Barcelona by two clear goals and any other result except 2-0 was going to do it – mission accomplished. In a game that will remain in club tradition, the Bianconeri were efficient and determined in frustrating their hosts to come away with a 3-0 result which puts them at the top of Group G and likely to receive a draw perhaps more favorable in the round of 16. of the Champions League.
Speaking after the game, coach Andrea Pirlo was pleased with his team’s performance in the victory.
“It was important for our journey that we pick up where we left off in the derby. When you start with this focus, focus and determination, the quality emerges.
“We had prepared the game to create superiority in midfield with three against their two, midfielders like Weston McKennie able to push, because we knew they were having a hard time preventing them from pushing in the middle.
“The tactical plan worked and the players did very well to make the most of the scoring opportunities.
Before the match, this match was billed as the last battle between two great footballers of all time, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Indeed, with Juve’s back to the wall as they fiercely defended themselves late, Ronaldo was responsible for an excellent takeaway in his own area as he stood between the Argentine and the ball to avoid a shooting opportunity.
“Ronaldo was very motivated to do a good performance here against his eternal rival, so when you are that motivated it becomes simple.
“There are a lot of games in a season and it’s easier to get shot for games like this, but we must not lose sight of the real goal, which is Serie A, so we have to be also focused and engaged there too. “
Legend Gianluigi Buffon had the opportunity to play today and didn’t disappoint, keeping Messi and his cohorts at bay and was rewarded with a rare clean sheet at Camp Nou.
Speaking after the game, the 42-year-old spoke of rolling back the years tonight, and how it was karmic retribution for Juve coming out of this competition even at the Bernabeu after Real Madrid received a penalty late and that Buffon was sent off for his protests with referee Michael Oliver.
“It’s a boost of confidence for us, which should not be underestimated, because we came here as losers and reversed the result of the first leg 2-0 to win 3-0. It’s extraordinary ,.
“I believe in fate, so I think things don’t just happen, I believe life makes up for it. Last time we won 3-0 in Madrid and it ended 3-1. This time we won 3-0 and took that result. I think it’s a good position. “
Juve saved the best for the best teams they’ve faced this season, and Buffon has been asked why this is so?
“There are going to be ups and downs in your journey, sometimes you need below average performance to grow taller. Our goal must be to find a precise identity, a soul, because without a soul you cannot even win at table football.
“When we are able to express ourselves to the maximum of our abilities, we make a really strong team.”
With no fans in the stands, Buffon’s voice often sounded loud and clear – is that the kind of leadership he brings to the squad that regular starter Wojciech Szczeszny lacks?
“It’s not fair to make comparisons with the past. Each season is different and unique. Obviously, the discussion is trying to find that identity as well, as we do it to help teammates and in the end it becomes contagious. If we can improve this communication, I think it takes another step in the process. “