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Real Madrid to face off Juventus for first time in 19 years

Real Madrid to face off Juventus for first time in 19 years

Posted May. 12, 2017 07:15,   

Updated May. 12, 2017 07:22


“It will be a special and beautiful final," head Coach Zinedine Zidane (45) of Real Madrid made the remarks to express his confidence in the final. His team will challenge to win the UEFA Champions League for two consecutive years and now is set to face off Juventus of Italy, a team that gave him many chances to emerge as a top player in Europe before his retirement.

Real Madrid lost 1-2 in the second game of the semifinals in the 2016-2017 UEFA Champions League against Atlético Madrid that took place in Madrid, Spain on Thursday. However, since Real Madrid won the first game 3-0, the former advanced to the final with 4-2 overall from the first and second matches.

Real Madrid, the last season’s winner, is set to have a showdown with Juventus in the final for the first time in 19 years. In the final of the 1997-1998 season, Real Madrid won 1-0 to acquire the championship. Zidane played in the game at the time, but failed to prevent his team’s loss. He improved his skills while playing for Juventus from 1996 to 2001, and later moved to Real Madrid and played through 2006. He failed to win the UEFA Champions League title while playing for Juventus, but won the title both as a player (2001-2002 season) and as the head coach of Real Madrid. “Juventus is an important team that gave me many lessons when I was active. But now I am with Real Madrid, which is the centerpiece of my life,” Zidane said.

The final will take place in Cardiff, Wales on June 4. The match between the two teams is drawing keen attention as a showdown between "sword and shield." Real Madrid, which is banking on Cristiano Ronald, is boasting robust scoring capability, as it has scored 32 goals in 12 UEFA Champions League matches (2.67 goals on average per game) in this season. In comparison, Juventus has demonstrated watertight defense based on solid teamwork of its fullbacks centered around goalie Gianluigi Buffon, losing just 0.25 goal on average per game.

Yun-Cheol Jeong trigger@donga.com