Claudio Marchisio says Juventus will not be overawed by the task facing them next week against Barcelona, insisting their measured and focused build-up over the next five days will help them perform to the maximum of their abilities in the Champions League final.
Speaking to the media at Juventus Stadium, the 29-year-old: “We’re certainly not scared of taking them on. We’re happy at having earned such an important occasion and there’s the right tension in the camp.
“If we think back to the start of the season nobody would have had us down as finalists and here we are. We’ll be calm in our build-up and aim to prepare for the game as best we can.”
The boyhood Bianconero is perhaps more aware than anyone of what Champions League success would mean to Juventus and will be seeking to emulate the heroes of 1996 when he and his team-mates go into battle at Berlin’s Olympiastadion on Saturday evening.
“I saw Juventus lift the title in 1996 and unfortunately also witnessed the defeats since. We know how much the fans want it, but also the club itself. We need to be aware that in a final the chances of winning and losing are 50/50, but we want to give it a good go, right until the end.”
Next week’s opponents, who completed a La Liga and Copa del Rey double with Saturday’s 3-1 win over Athletic Bilbao, remain bookmakers’ favourites for the title, but Marchisio is confident the Bianconeri have enough in their locker to ensure they give as good as they get in Berlin.
“We possess plenty of respect for Barcelona, who have a phenomenal strikeforce that’s capable of scoring 120 goals. Having said that we’re an organised side with a tight-knit group and great heart. We’ll go out there and play in a carefree manner, aware of the qualities we have.”