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Juventus shape up for Shakhtar exam

Published: Monday 1 October 2012, 20.41CET
Juventus have been told to expect a tough test from FC Shakhtar Donetsk in Turin while visiting coach Mircea Lucescu is looking forward to a reunion with Andrea Pirlo.
by Ben Gladwell
from Turin
Juventus shape up for Shakhtar exam
Juventus's Andrea Pirlo and Fabio Quagliarella stop for a drink during training ©AFP/Getty Images
Published: Monday 1 October 2012, 20.41CET

Juventus shape up for Shakhtar exam

Juventus have been told to expect a tough test from FC Shakhtar Donetsk in Turin while visiting coach Mircea Lucescu is looking forward to a reunion with Andrea Pirlo.

Juventus assistant coach Massimo Carrera sounded a warning ahead of his side's home meeting with "a very strong" FC Shakhtar Donetsk in UEFA Champions League Group E. Visiting boss Mircea Lucescu, meanwhile, is looking forward to meeting up with one of his favourite proteges from his days in charge of Brescia Calcio.

We know it is going to be a difficult game and we are going to have to give it everything. We have to play like Juve.
Massimo Carrera
At the moment, I consider Juventus as one of the best, if not the No1 side in Europe, so it is a challenge for us to face up to them
Mircea Lucescu

Juventus
Assistant coach Massimo Carrera
Shakhtar are a very strong team technically, and their coach knows Italian football well. They have plenty of Brazilians, so we are going to have to be careful as they are skilful and know how to play football. We know it is going to be a difficult game and we are going to have to give it everything. We have to play like Juve. We know they have a strong defence, that they have not lost in 25 games, and they deserve full respect. I repeat, it is going to be a very difficult game. We have got to beat them and we know what we have to do, so we have to keep working and improving. It is a crucial match but before we start thinking about the future, we have got to beat them.

Weekend result
Saturday: Juventus 4-1 AS Roma (Pirlo 11, Vidal 16 pen, Matri 19, Giovinco 90; Osvaldo 69 pen)
Buffon; Barzagli, Bonucci, Chiellini; Cáceres, Vidal, Pirlo, Marchisio (Asamoah 77), De Ceglie (Pogba 85); Matri (Giovinco 76), Vučinić.

• Juventus scored three goals in the first 19 minutes to set up a convincing 4-1 win against Roma and extend their unbeaten Serie A record to 45 matches (five wins and one draw this season).

Team news
The Bianconeri have no new injury concerns. Winger Simone Pepe (knee) is still training on his own and assistant coach Carrera said he did not expect him to play his first games of the season until after the international break.

Shakhtar
Coach Mircea Lucescu

I know Andrea Pirlo very well. When I worked at Brescia, he was 15 and a half and was already attracting attention. We have stayed in contact since. His development has been exceptional and I am convinced that, with all he has done last year in the league and for Italy, he deserved to win the Ballon d'Or. He should have won it to crown his career. Of course Pirlo is in great form. For me, Pirlo is always the number one.

Juve are well organised and have worked hard to get back to where they were years ago. They are playing very well, like us. We know it will be a very difficult game because Juve are back in the Champions League after a long time and they will have 41,000 fans pushing them on. We know what kind of game they play, but it is not enough just to know that. At the moment, I consider Juventus as one of the best, if not the No1 side in Europe, so it is a challenge for us to face up to them. With the point they got in London, Juve have the best chance in this group, but we want to challenge both Juve and Chelsea. We play really well at home and hopefully we can do so away too.

Weekend result
Friday: Shakhtar 2-1 FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk (Mkhitaryan 19, Srna 80; Rotan 9)
Pyatov; Srna, Kucher, Rakitskiy, Raţ; Stepanenko, Fernandinho, Ilsinho (Alex Teixeira 54), Mkhitaryan, Willian (Eduardo 82); Luiz Adriano (Dević 73).

• Mkhitaryan's 15th goal in 13 club appearances this season helped Shakhtar record their 19th successive league win – despite Fernandinho and Luiz Adriano missing a penalty apiece.

Team news
Shakhtar come to Turin with their squad at full strength.

Match fact
Shakhtar boss Lucescu faced Juventus on nine occasions in the 1990s as coach of Serie A sides AC Pisa 1909, Brescia Calcio, AC Reggiana 1919 and FC Internazionale Milano. His only victory was Brescia's 2-0 home win on 14 March 1994 – four games were lost and the other four drawn. Lucescu's final match against Juve was a 0-0 draw with Inter on 27 February 1999.


Last updated: 01/10/12 21.00CET

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