Barcelona team for Juventus Champions League clash: Messi snubbed but Suarez starts

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Gerard Pique comes back into contention after serving a 1-match suspension, so that will undoubtedly come as a timely boost for the Catalans.

Lionel Messi is only named a substitute for Barcelona's Champions League showdown with Juventus this evening.

Barca lost 3-0 in Italy in the quarter-final first leg last season, the return leg in Spain ending goalless.

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Ernesto Valverde's side require just one point to progress into the last 16, while a draw will be good enough for Juve if Sporting Lisbon fail to beat Olympiacos. "Our opponents will obviously want to progress too but for us, this is a match of utmost importance". It'll be a tight match and I honestly don't think there's a clear favourite.

"I always see Barcelona as being strong; they will always compete for titles".

Safe to say, we will have to keep a close eye on Messi and his teammates' celebration after these reports from Spain.

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Chiellini was a late addition to the absentee list with a thigh problem, while Stephan Lichtsteiner is cup-tied and Federico Bernardeschi injured.

Juve stars Gianluigi Buffon and Andrea Barzagli are set to start. Rakitic said in a press conference before their game against Juventus.

He, like Valverde also took a cautious approach, insisting that it would hard tonight. They have only conceded twice and scored 22 so right now they have a greater balance than us. They're coming directly off a loss to Sampdoria in Serie A over the weekend need a positive result against Barcelona should they wish to finish first in the group and avoid another large European club in the knockout stage.

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