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Juve's defense in stats and facts

STATS: Juventus's formidable defensive numbers ahead of UCL clash with Monaco

May 3, 2017 By Michelle Bonsu
Juventus are well-known for their tough defense, but these numbers really reveal La Vecchia Signora's got probably the strongest defense in Europe.

Two. That's the total number of goals Juventus have conceded so far in this season's Champions League. Sevilla's Nicolas Pareja was the last player to manage to score against the Bianconeri, and that was during matchday five of the group stages on November 22, 2016.

In fact, La Vecchia Signora were the only side to make it through the knockout rounds without conceding a goal. Impressively, that included a two-legged quarter-finals tie against Barcelona, the team that beat them 3-1 in the Champions League final in 2015.

However, not only did Juventus get revenge on the Blaugrana, but they did so by preventing the Spanish giants from scoring across 180 minutes. That included 90 minutes at Camp Nou, where Barcelona had netted a whopping 21 goals and conceded just one across their 10 games in the Champions League.

Next up on the menu for Juventus are a high flying Monaco, but the Bianconeri certainly will not be intimidated by Les Rouges-et-Blancs free-scoring attack.

Here are some stats ahead of Juve's upcoming clash with Monaco:

Serie A

Clean sheets: 18

Games with 1 goal conceded: 12

Games with 2 goals conceded: 3

Games with 3 goals conceded: 1, (3-1 loss to Genoa on the road)

Goals for vs. against: 70 vs. 22

Games played: 34

Champions League

Clean sheets: 8

Games with 1 goal conceded: 2 (1-1 draw with Lyon, 3-1 win over Sevilla)

Goals for vs. against: 17 vs. 2

Games played: 10

On the cusp of making history

In shutting down Lionel Messi & Co. over 180 minutes, Juventus became the first team since Bayern Munich in 2012/2013 to prevent the Blaugrana from scoring. Fans will remember that also marked Barcelona's worst ever defeat in European competition, as they were crushed 7-0 on aggregate as die Roten went on to win the title.

Furthermore, Juventus are only the third team to concede just two goals after 10 games in the Champions League. The first was Ajax during the 1995/1996 campaign, followed by Arsenal during the 2005/2006 season. Both teams went on to make the final, but were unable to lift the trophy. Should they manage to get through this two-legged semi-final sans conceding a goal, Juventus will stand alone as the team with the strongest defensive record in a Champions League season.

But who are the key players making this happen? Let's have a quick look:

Leonardo Bonucci

Bonucci has been a key part of Juve's famous "BBC" defense as well as with the Italian national team for the past few seasons. The 30-year-old is reportedly a target for several Premier League sides, with Antonio Conte hoping to bring him to Chelsea last summer. However, for now, he's still with the Bianconeri and was part of the team that made a run to the 2015 final.

This season, he has made an average of 2.0 tackles, 2.3 interceptions, and 3.4 clearances per match in his eight Champions League appearances. In addition to scoring one goal, he has an 85.1% pass completion rate, showing that he's comfortable with distributing the ball from the back, whilst only being booked once so far in this tournament.

Giorgio Chiellini

With Massimiliano Allegri converting largely to four at the back, Chiellini now forms a formidable centre-back pairing alongside international colleague Bonucci. This season, he's made six appearances in the Champions League (one as a substitute), and has achieved a 88.1% pass completion rate, whilst making 3.5 clearances, 2.2 interceptions, and 2.5 tackles per match.

Alex Sandro

Signed from Porto at the start of the 2015 season, Alex Sandro has settled into life well in Turin. Deployed on the left side in Allegri's 4-2-3-1 formation, he has benefited from this tactical switch and was particularly impressive against his former side as Juventus defeated them 3-0 on aggregate.

The Brazilian has made eight appearances in the Champions League (two as a sub). During that time, he's yet to pick up a yellow or a red card, and boasts a pass completion rate of 84% as well as averages 2.5 tackles, 1.1 interceptions, and 1.4 clearances per match.

Dani Alves

Juve fans must be happy to have Dani Alves in their ranks. And even better, the club didn't have to pay for the veteran Brazilian, who arrived on a free transfer from Barcelona. Alves put in an excellent shift against his former side, and has made nine appearances so far in the Champions League. Deployed on the right hand side, the 33-year-old has a 87.7% pass completion rate, has chipped in with two goals and two assists, and averages 1.2 dribbles per match. Defensively, his numbers read as 2.7 tackles, 1.1 interceptions, and 1.4 clearances.

Alongside Gianluigi Buffon, these defenders have been responsible for Juventus managing to go over 360 minutes - that's six hours - without conceding a goal. Can they continue this long-standing record against Monaco later today?

 

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