Juventus
    Juventus
      21.10.2019 11:00 - in: UCL S

      Opposition Watch: Lokomotiv Moscow

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      Discovering our Russian opponents

      It's a victory and a defeat for Yuri Semin's side in the first two UEFA Champions League matches: who will next face Juventus in their Group D outing. 

      TOP OF THE TABLE IN RUSSIA

      First in the standings with 29 points, and fresh off Friday's 2-0 success against Akhmat Grozny, Lokomotiv Moscow are looking to repeat their feat of winning the Russian league again, like they did in the 2017/2018 season (14 years after their last triumph). Since 2016, Yuri Semin has been the man who has guided the club, after spending some of his playing career ar the club too. Usually, the team alternates between 4-1-4-1 and 4-4-2. One of their key players is Guilherme, a Brazilian-born Russian, who has been playing for the club continuously since 2007. Meanwhile, in defence the star is Vedran Ćorluka, runner-up in the 2018 FIFA World Cup with Croatia, while there is also Joao Mario who arrived from Italy, on loan from Inter. Eder is also present in the squad list, he was the decisive man in the 2016 European final against France, won 2-1 thanks to his extra time goal. Fedor Smolov is the pillar of the offensive department.

      EX-BIANCONERO: HOWEDES

      In the Parovozy squad, there is a former Bianconeri player. This is the German, Benedikt Howedes, born in 1988, who wore the Black and White jersey in the 2017/2018 season, who endured an unlucky year, which was punctuated by a series of injuries that did not allow him to play much. He featured in only three official appearances, scoring one goal in the process.  

      FIRST TWO Champions League MATCHDAYS

      Despite being the simplest group match on the card (at Allianz Stadium against the fourth-placed team), Lokomotiv Moscow will arrive in Turin with three points in the standings, which were secured on the first day against Bayer Leverkusen. Two defensive errors on the part of the German backline gave way to an unexpected victory.

      Lokomotiv tends to play with a low center of gravity, with their possession, in the two matches barely reaching 36% (versus the Bianconeri have claimed 51%), while their claimed 74% of successful passes (89% to that of Juventus).

      In attack, Juventus have threatened their opponent's goal more times than their Tuesday evening opponents, but also in the defensive phase, despite the tactical attitude of the Muscovites, the Bianconeri have only conceded 30 shots on goal, to Lokomotiv's 35.

      To finish, also on the plane of the kilometers ran, Juventus has more mileage under their belt with 225km against the 215kms of the Russians.

      In short, the data seems to confirm some weaknesses of Lokomotiv, who with their masked 4-3-3, almost always switches to a 4-5-1 in the non-possession phase of the game. They will probably try to defend the tie, by trying to annoy the rear of Sarri's team through fast transitions. Joao Mario and Krychowiak are surely the two most dangerous players from this point of view.

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