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Heynckes braced for Juve challenge

Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes has praised Juventus’ strength in defence after the two clubs were drawn together in the Champions League.

Serie A champions Juve defeated Celtic in the round of 16, while Bundesliga leaders Bayern got past Arsenal to reach the last eight.

Heynckes feels Antonio Conte’s men are the complete package and expects the quarter-final tie to be a tight affair.

“I know Juventus very well. They’re the best Italian team at the moment and they have a fantastic new stadium. They’re really high calibre, really tough opponents,” Heynckes told the official Bayern website.

“They’re extremely strong in defence and have lots of attacking quality. We’ll see great football, two fantastic knockout cup nights.

“I hope we have our noses in front at the end of the day, but it’s an evenly-matched pairing.”

Bayern’s sporting director Matthias Sammer was equally respectful of Juve and expects the tie to be keenly contested.

“Both teams are dominating their domestic championships,” he said.

“The Italian league is once again moving in the right direction, and that includes bringing on young players. They’ve long ago climbed out of the trough.

“Juventus are traditionally strong with good players. Form on the day in both matches will decide who goes through. Mentally and in terms of focus, a top-calibre team like Juventus is just right.”

The first leg is scheduled to take place on April 2 at the Allianz Arena.

Sat 16 March, 2013
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