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Juventus additions strengthen Champions League bid – Marotta

Juventus chief executive Giuseppe Marotta hopes that the club’s transfer-window business can help translate their domestic dominance into the Champions League.

The Bianconeri have won five consecutive Serie A titles but, after losing the 2014-15 Champions League final to Barcelona, they were cruelly knocked out by Bayern Munich in the last-16 last season.

Paul Pogba has joined Manchester United in a world-record deal in the current window, but the likes of Gonzalo Higuain, Miralem Pjanic, Mehdi Benatia and Dani Alves have arrived to strengthen Juve while Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Blaise Matuidi has been tipped to make the move to Italy.

Sevilla, Lyon and Dinamo Zagreb provide the opposition in Group H, and Marotta is confident that Juve can be a contender in the latter stages.

“We’ve strengthened our squad and feel ready to tackle this season’s Champions League,” he said. “We want to go as far as possible.

“Our first aim is to reach the Champions League knockout stages, regardless of the opposition we’ve been drawn against.”

Juve were paired with Sevilla at the same stage last term and lost in Spain, a result that saw them qualify second from the group.

And head coach Massimiliano Allegri had a word of warning for his side.

“Last year we missed a big chance at Sevilla,” he added.

“It will be a red-hot atmosphere in Lyon and Zagreb so we need to be very careful and stay focused.”

Thu 25 Aug, 2016
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