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Juventus

Champions Juve born to win

Juventus
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 By Michael Cox

Champions League battles: Javier Mascherano vs. Carlos Tevez

Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano have a lot history together.

Barcelona and Juventus haven't played each another for 12 years, which is partly what makes this season's Champions League final so intriguing. In a competition packed full of "repeat" ties, this is a genuinely new tactical battle to get excited about.

Nevertheless, various players on opposing sides have faced one another before, when playing for other clubs, or at international level. It means various individual duels are also fascinating -- here are three of the key battles.

Javier Mascherano...

Buffon and Ter Stegen are the rocks at the heart of Juventus and Barcelona

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno reckons Barcelona will have too much for Juventus in the Champions League final.

As Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon and Barcelona's Marc-Andre ter Stegen clasp hands in Berlin on Sunday for the traditional show of solidarity before a big game, the wonder is whether they will talk about the one piece of common ground between them, beyond the fact they're gracing a stage like the Champions League final.

They're not just at opposite ends of the pitch; they're at opposite ends of their careers, with totally opposing circumstances. It's difficult to think of a contrast between...

Juventus' financial nous key in rise to Champions League final

Italian champions Juventus warmed up for next weekend's UEFA Champions League final with a 2-2 draw with Hellas Verona in their final match of the Serie A season.

Juventus will return to the top table of European football this Saturday when they step into Berlin's Olympiastadion to take on Barcelona in the Champions League final.

The Old Lady are a team in the truest sense and their progress to this year's Champions League final, and success in securing a fourth consecutive Serie A title, can be attributed to manager Massimiliano Allegri forging a cohesive, well-drilled unit full of experienced heads. Indeed, six of the players who started in the 1-1 semifinal...

Patrice Evra a hero for Juventus and Man United but unloved in France

The ESPN FC crew debate whether Patrice Evra and co. can halt Barcelona's fearsome front three in the Champions League final.

It might be surprising in such an egocentric industry but referring to yourself in the third person is rare in football. Only three players spring to mind: Pele, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Patrice Evra.

"It is not easy to be Patrice Evra," said the Frenchman after the 2010 World Cup. He also reminded everybody in September 2012 that "Patrice Evra has always fought for his place."

If you thought the image, status and popularity of Thierry Henry in France were in flux, wait until you hear about Evra's....

Five best European-based players this season aged 21 or younger

Juventus and Sassuolo co-own Italian prodigy Domenico Berardi.

With the large majority of the European leagues having come to a close, now is the time to take a step back and reflect on the season that was. With that in mind, here are our top five best-performing young players, currently aged 21 or younger, for the 2014-15 season.

Domenico Berardi | 20 | Sassuolo | Striker

Domenico Berardi burst onto the Serie A scene with 16 goals during the 2013-14 season. He looked an excellent all-round forward: agile, hard-working, intelligent in his movements and a good...

The Serie A 2014-15 Best XI

ESPN FC's Gabriele Marcotti talks Serie A, and discusses all the talking points of the final week of the season in Italy
ESPN FC's Gabriele Marcotti discusses Lazio's stunning victory over Napoli with Champions League football on the line.

Juventus dominated another Italian season, but how many Bianconeri players make James Horncastle's team of 2014-15?

Serie A best XI
James Horncastle's Best XI for the 2014-15 Serie A season.

Goalkeeper

Gianluigi Buffon, Juventus: His longevity is all the more impressive when contrasted with the sudden decline of his great contemporary Iker Casillas, a player three years his junior. The 37-year-old kept 18 clean sheets in 33 league games.

Right-back

Matteo Darmian, Torino: Built on last season and an enterprising display against England at the World...