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Real Madrid will have to be at their attacking best to beat Juventus

Tuesday 30th May 2017
The Champions League final between Real Madrid and Juventus is fast approaching and it promises to be an incredibly entertaining game between Europe's two best sides this season.

On the line is a third Champions League title in four years for Cristiano Ronaldo and co, while for the Old Lady it sees perhaps the final chance for Gianluigi Buffon and Giorgio Chiellini to lift the famous trophy.

From the perspective of the neutral, it is a very exciting prospect and one which could bring an affair with a lot of goals.

From a Real Madrid view though, this is one that they must be at the very top of their game to claim victory.

Juventus are a side synonymous with success through hard graft, defensive organisation and Italian resolve. In recent years though they have added a truly incisive attacking intent to their repertoire.

Gonzalo Higuain, Paulo Dybala and Mario Mandzukic have been in fine scoring form this term and they have led from the front in Europe too, striking fear into the hearts of their opposition. They are no longer a team that solely relies upon defending for 90 minutes and stealing a goal on the counter-attack.

For Real then, this poses a massive problem. Madrid are renowned for having one of the most explosive attacks in the game, but their defending has been questionable all season.

In La Liga their ability to keep the ball allows Madrid to keep their smaller opponents at arm's length, while when they are on song they are able to blow the opposition away, making it impossible for them the expose the defence.

When they play a bigger side though and they are not on top form they are given real problems. In the first-half of the second league in the Champions League against Atletico Madrid, the home side came out of the blocks quickly and attacked Madrid who was left flat-footed and vulnerable.

Atleti scored two in quick succession and threatened to knock their city rivals out of the competition before Real rallied, in part thanks to their three goals advantage from the first leg.

In the final though, Real will not have an aggregate lead and one goal could lead to two and Juventus have displayed just how difficult it is to break them down once, let alone more than that.

For Madrid then, they must go on the offensive and look to keep the ball away from the Italians. If they can do this then it will severely decrease the chance of them conceding, increasing their own.

The last thing they want is to go a goal down which forces them to chase the game. This allows Juventus to defend deep, soak up the pressure and his the Spanish side on the counter-attack with their quick and clinical attack.

The final could prove to be one of the most entertaining for years between two very talented teams. Madrid will be desperate to add to their La Liga title with a European trophy but they could not have asked for a tougher test in the final.
Ben Darvill

I graduated with an upper second class degree in English and Creative writing from Cardiff Metropolitan University. I have been a freelance sports writer since leaving University and have written for a number of online websites. I am a Chelsea and England fan but I enjoy watching any team play as I have an intense passion for football.

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