The current Italian league champions Juventus are FC Barcelona’s first opponents on their US tour. La Vecchia Signora claimed their sixth scudetto in a row last season and coach Massimiliano Allegri can count on the majority of the squad that also reached the Champions League final in 2016/17, losing to Real Madrid in the final after having eliminated Luis Enrique’s Barça side in the quarter finals.
39 year old goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon begins his seventeenth season as a Juventus player alongside other important figures such as striker Gonzalo Higuaín, defender Giorgio Chiellini and the rising star of Argentine football Paolo Dybala.
New faces include Benatia and Douglas Costa, signed from Bayern Munich, Betancur from Boc Juniors, goalkeeper Szczesny from Arsenal and defender Mattia De Sciglio from AC Milan. Juan Cuadrado joins on a permanent deal after having featured for Juventus last season on loan.
Regarding departures, the most notable are Dani Alves’ exit for French Football and Paris Saint-Germain and the decision of defender Leonardo Bonucci to sign for rivals AC Milan after seven seasons with the bianconeri.
The Italian side have all the ingredients to suppose a tough test for Ernesto Valverde’s team in a rematch of the 2015 Champions League final that kicks off at 6.05pm local time in New York on Saturday at the Metlife Stadium.