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atleti drive us mad

Juventus hoping to avoid Atletico Madrid in Champions League semi-final draw, says Gianluigi Buffon

Serie A giants would rather face Real Madrid or Monaco as they bid to secure a place in Cardiff final

GIANLUIGI BUFFON says Juventus are desperate to avoid Atletico Madrid in the last four of the Champions League.

Juve produced two brilliant displays to see of Barcelona 3-0 over two-legs and book a place in the semi-finals of the European Cup.

Gianluigi Buffon would rather Juventus avoided Atletico Madrid in the Champions League semi-finals

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Gianluigi Buffon would rather Juventus avoided Atletico Madrid in the Champions League semi-finals

Yet veteran keeper Buffon admits the prospect of facing Diego Simeone’s Atletico is one Juventus would rather not face in the last four.


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Instead the 39-year-old would rather come up against defending champions Real Madrid or Monaco in the next round.

Atletico Madrid are the team Juve would rather miss out in in the semi-final draw on Friday

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Atletico Madrid are the team Juve would rather miss out in in the semi-final draw on Friday

He believes the fact Atleti are not pushing for the La Liga title will allow Simeone to rest his kep players to ensure they are peak condition for Champions League matches.

Buffon said: “Maybe it’s better to meet Monaco or Real, who will spend significant energy in the fight for the league.

“They would rotate less, compared to Atletico, who have a more defined position in the table and can manage themselves.”

Buffon admits the clean sheet in the second leg against Barcelona came as a surprise – and is the ideal boost the players need going into the crucial final month of the season.

He added: “Aside from the result, the belief and character of our approach was excellent and it’s a good confidence booster to qualify comfortably against what remains probably the best team in the world.

“I did think we had a good chance of qualification after the 3-0 first leg result, but I honestly didn’t believe we would come to Camp Nou and keep a clean sheet.”

Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini fight over Lionel Messi's shirt following Juventus draw with Barcelona

The Juventus players celebrate after they knocked out Barcelona at the Nou Camp

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The Juventus players celebrate after they knocked out Barcelona at the Nou Camp
Neymar cries as Barcelona are knocked out of the Champions League by Juventus