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30 Aug 2013 - in: Youth academy

Primavera set for UEFA Youth League clashes

The Juventus youngsters will also face FC Copenhagen, Galatasaray and Real Madrid - the first team’s Champions League group opponents - in the UEFA Youth League competition

Just as Antonio Conte’s first team will be tasked with doing in the coming months, Andrea Zanchetta’s Primavera will also line up against FC Copenhagen, Galatasaray and Real Madrid in European competition.

But while the seniors will take them on in the Champions League, the youngsters are to play them in the brand new UEFA Youth League, the elite European tournament reserved for Under 19s.

For the group stage, the format is identical to that of the senior Champions League, meaning the Primavera will face the three teams in home and away fixtures which, although the official dates and times have yet to be announced, will be played in the afternoon of or the day before the main Champions League clashes.

In keeping with the principal Champions League format, the top two teams from each group will both progress through to the next stage. The knockout rounds are different, though, in that they will not be disputed over two legs. The semi-finals and final will be contested in neutral grounds.

As well as now knowing the identity of their opponents, the Primavera also discovered yesterday where they will face them when playing at home.

Andrea Zanchetta’s side will use Pistoni di Ivrea as their European base, a stadium which holds more than 4,000 fans and, thanks to the club who call it home, has hosted a wealth of professional football action.

The Primavera will have plenty of time to plot their way to victory, since their debut match in the tournament is set for Tuesday 17 September (subject to confirmation) in Copenhagen, but first they must concentrate on their domestic campaign.

After winning their first game against Spezia at home last weekend, the Bianconeri now face a long trip to Cesena on Saturday afternoon.

The team from Emilia-Romagna have yet to register points on the board after being defeated at home by Sampdoria last weekend, and, with two former Bianconeri names in their ranks, will have an extra incentive to get a result against Juve.

Their coach Giuseppe Angelini was in charge of the Juventus Allievi B last season, while striker Gabriele Moncini spent pre-season alongside his Bianconeri team-mates, registering the first goal of the Primavera campaign in a friendly against Lucento.