Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

CHAMP Hed

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

CHAMP Hed

Article excerpt

It could be a momentous week for Juventus. And a big one for Real Madrid, too.

Two of Europe's grandest teams will be defending big leads this week in the second leg of the Champions League semifinals.

Juventus beat Monaco 2-0 last week in its quest to reach the final for the second time in three seasons. Madrid, looking to become the first team to win back-to-back Champions League titles, defeated Atletico Madrid 3-0.

Madrid won the title in 2014 and 2016, both times against Atletico, while Juventus lost to Barcelona in 2015. The Italian club is seeking its first Champions League title in more than two decades.

JUVENTUS vs. MONACO

The Italian champions have a chance to return to the Champions League final and clinch an unprecedented sixth Serie A title this week.

"First we have to recover some energy and then we will focus on Monaco," Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri said after his team's 1-1 draw against Torino, which still left the club in position to secure the title when it visits second-place Roma five days after the game against Monaco.

"Passing the round is not a given," he said. "Roma comes after."

Juventus will again look to Gonzalo Higuain to lead its attack Tuesday against Monaco, especially after the Argentina forward scored both goals in the first leg. Higuain hadn't previously scored in a Champions League knockout match since 2013.

Monaco needs one more goal to reach 150 for the season but at least two to have a chance of reaching the final.

"We have to be confident against Juventus, even though it's going to be very difficult," Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim said. "We must keep playing good football the way we know. If we score early on, maybe that can change things."

Jardim will be hoping 18-year-old striker Kylian Mbappe and top scorer Radamel Falcao do better than in the first leg, when both missed good chances to score against Gianluigi Buffon.

ATLETICO MADRID

vs. REAL MADRID

Atletico's much-hyped defense failed in the first leg, and now it's up to the offense to try to get the team back on its feet. …

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