Turkish champion Galatasaray will enter tonight’s Champions League Group B match against Italian giants Juventus knowing that nothing less than a victory will give them a berth in the second round.
Even a draw would allow the “Old Lady” to advance at the Lions’ expense, while anything other than a victory would also leave the door open for Cim Bom to miss out on a parachute place into the knockout stages of the second-tier European competition, the Europa League, as FC Copenhagen could snatch the third spot in the group if it betters Galatasaray’s result against already-qualified Real Madrid.
Juventus, however, will be without influential playmaker Andrea Pirlo due to a knee injury. The Lions’ Wesley Sneijder, meanwhile, is expected to play in the critical game after receiving an injury during a domestic game against Torku Konyaspor.
Coach Roberto Mancini does not believe Juventus will miss Pirlo when the two sides meet in the match, which starts at 9:45 p.m.
“What worries me is that Juve can be happy with a draw and still qualify,” Mancini told the Tuttosport. “We have the utmost respect for them, as they are one of the best teams in Europe, getting better every year, and it will be tough for us. I think we need to be calm when playing football, not tense or full of doubt. What we must first of all do on Tuesday is step on to that pitch aware that we have a chance and can gamble with our chips. We are playing at home, which is an advantage, and anything can happen in a football match,” he said.