Champions League resumes after 5 month hiatus
After a five-month break caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the Champions League will start again today with two eight-final rematches. At home, Juventus Turin will try to make up for a 0: 1 defeat from the first match in Lyon, and Real Madrid, who lost 1: 2 in February, also needs a turnaround at Manchester City Stadium. Games traditionally start at 21:00.
Many safety measures will accompany the resumption of competition due to COVID-19. Matches will be played without spectators until the appeal. While the eight-final rematch will still occur in the home stadiums of specific clubs, the Champions League will be played in Lisbon and for one match from the quarterfinals.
Among the newly adopted regulations is the obligation to test team members for coronavirus. Before outdoor matches, the inspection must take place two to three days before the kick-off, and in the case of home teams, one to two days before the game. Also, if required by the authorities, UEFA counts on further tests the day before the match. Players were also advised not to change their jerseys after the matches.
Juventus lost the first match in Lyon 0: 1, but the turns in the Champions League for the Old Lady are nothing new. Last year, the Turin team lost the first match with Atlétic Madrid 0: 2, but in the home revenge, thanks to the hat-trick of the star Cristiano Ronald, he secured a place.
Juventus is in full swing, as Serie A, in which he secured his ninth title in a row, ended on Saturday. On the other hand, Lyon played four preparatory matches and only one sharp match in the League Cup final after the March break and the subsequent premature end of the French league. In it, after a penalty, Paris St. succumbed. Germain.
“I watched the match, and I was surprised by how physical they are. The biggest problem with this unexpected situation is that we don’t know how it will affect the teams. So we have no idea if it will be an advantage for us or, conversely, it will be an advantage for them, “said Juventus coach Maurizio Sarri.
Real also has to turn the score from the first match, which is complicated because the 1: 2 defeat with Manchester City came to San Bernabeu. Also, coach Zinédin Zidan will miss captain Sergio Ramos, who received a red card in the first duel.
But Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola admitted that the English team was lucky in the first match. “We played a good result, but if we play like in Madrid now, we will have a lot of problems,” he said. “We must not overthink our advantage. If anyone can turn it around, it is teams like Real or Barcelona and Bayern,” he added.