Porto ambition matches Juventus, says Danilo

Danilo insists Porto are just as ambitious as Juventus as the teams prepare to clash in the last 16 of the Champions League.

The Estadio do Dragao will host the first leg of the contest tonight, with Porto looking for a first win in four matches against the Italian giants.

And midfielder Danilo sees it as a meeting of equals. He said: “FC Porto and Juventus are two teams in different realities.

“We have to sell the best players, they can simply buy. There are big differences in terms of budgets, but the ambition is the same.

“We are very organised defensively and in attack we have young players who can make a difference, but our great strength is the spirit of camaraderie that exists between us.

“Certainly the atmosphere of the Dragao will make a difference. We play every game as if it were our last.”

Both teams head into the clash in great form, with Porto having won their last six games while Serie A leaders Juventus are on a seven-game winning streak.

The match will pit two of Europe’s great custodians against each other — 35-year-old Iker Casillas and 39-year-old Gianluigi Buffon locking horns once again.

Juventus, meanwhile, have been boosted by the return to fitness of key defenders Giorgio Chiellini and Andrea Barzagli, who were both included in the squad after recovering from thigh injuries.

It is more than two decades since the Old Lady last lifted the biggest prize in European club football, and attempting to address that was a major factor in the signing last summer of Gonzalo Higuain.

Juve paid Napoli €90m for the services of the Argentinian and he has not disappointed, scoring 22 goals in 32 appearances. Higuain is content to carry the weight of expectation, stating: “I feel very happy, for the love that I have for my team-mates, the fans, the club, the city — I feel part of them. I knew I had made the right choice.

“I do not feel any pressure. Indeed, for me it is a privilege to know they signed me thinking of winning in Europe.”


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