The runaway leaders of Serie A and the newly crowned Bundesliga champions reconvene in Italy on Wednesday for their Champions League quarter-final second leg, but do Juventus have any chance of overturning their two-goal deficit against Bayern Munich?
A 2-0 victory at the Allianz Arena last week courtesy of goals from David Alaba and Thomas Muller has put Bayern in control of the tie, but as Arsenal will testify, that is no guarantee that the match is done and dusted.
Of course, after winning 3-1 at the Emirates, Bayern were dreadful in the return leg and very nearly let the Gunners stage a quite incredible comeback.
Okay, Arsenal’s 2-0 victory in Munich was ultimately in vain, but if Juventus are to get back into this tie, then the side from Turin are going to have to take some encouragement from that display, because there is precious little else in the way of hope for the Italian champions when you look at Bayern’s record.
But first, the positives. In truth, Bayern totally outclassed a strangely anaemic Juventus last week and should have put the tie out of sight.
That they didn’t manage to secure a greater winning margin than just the two goals has kept Antonio Conte’s side in the tie and with a fighting chance, if still an uphill battle.
The Old Lady is a team that is used to winning football matches, which will hold them in good stead: the reverse to Bayern last week was only their sixth loss in all competitions this season and they have won 18 of the 25 home games they have played this term, losing just twice.
But giving a Bayern side such a lead is asking for trouble, especially with key men Arturo Vidal and Stephan Lichtsteiner suspended.
Munich have won 35 of the 42 games they have played in 2012/13 and will not fear a trip anywhere, let alone when they have such a commanding advantage.
The bookies at bwin make even make them favourites to win inside 90 minutes at 27/20, with the draw at 12/5 and Juventus a 37/20 chance.
That is understandable, but I think the best bet here is that the match is goalless at half-time, which is priced at 11/5 and would return £64 for anyone successfully backing it with their free £20 bet after registering with bwin.
I see this match starting in cagey fashion. Juventus know they need to score, but with 90 minutes to score twice they don’t need to score in the first ten minutes and as such (insert Italian stereotype) they will be just as concerned about not conceding an early goal than they will about scoring one.
An away goal for Bayern kills the tie stone dead so Conte will want to ensure that doesn’t happen first and foremost. Even if Juve score their first goal with ten minutes left, the tie comes alive, so I don’t expect a gung-ho policy from the Italians.
By the same token, if nothing happens then Bayern are through so they will not want to attack with abandon and let a goal in unnecessarily.
Boss Jupp Heynckes will be eyeing an away goal, of course, but his priority will be to not allow Juventus back into the tie above all else.
What’s more, these are two sides that never seem to concede goals. Juventus have conceded just 20 league goals to Bayern’s 13, and their respective home and away defensive records are startling.
Juve have kept 10 clean sheets in their 16 home Serie A games, letting in just nine goals, while Bayern have shipped a mere two goals in 14 away league matches, keeping 12 clean sheets.
Conte’s side have not conceded a first-half goal at home all season in Serie A, while Bayern have not conceded a first-half goal on their travels in the Bundesliga all year – two quite remarkable statistics.
The Old Lady have let in just one goal in their four Champions League ties at the Juventus Stadium this term, while Bayern have conceded just one first-half goal in four European trips so far.
Juventus conceded after just 30 seconds last week and you can be certain they won’t be letting that happen again.
And with the match sure to start in tight and tense fashion, I like the 11/5 that there is another goalless opening period in Turin on Wednesday.