Juventus want to be among Europe’s elite, says Marchisio

The Italy international has underlined the importance of Tuesday’s encounter for the Bianconeri’s Champions League ambitions

Juventus midfielder Claudio Marchisio has urged his team-mates to show they are among Europe’s elite in Tuesday’s Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid.

Despite winning Serie A in each of the last three seasons, Juve have struggled to transfer their domestic dominance on to the European stage, after failing to advance beyond the group stage of the competition in 2012/13 and 2013/14.

This time around the Turin giants need a point to book their ticket for the knockout stages, while a win by two clear goals would see them move top of Group A and Marchisio feels the match at Juventus Stadium is their most important of the year.

“We want to be among the elite in Europe and this is our objective. We’ve worked hard over these last few months to get to this point – the most important game of the year – and we can’t get anything wrong now,” Marchisio said at a press conference.

“We’ve got to be very focused because regardless of the group standings, it’s not going to be easy. We’ve got to think of this game now as it’s very important and we want to go through, whether it be as first or second in the group.

“Last year, we made it to the semi-finals of the Europa League which was very important. This year, we’re playing to go through in the Champions League and we know how important this game is and how much it’s worth for our season.”

Juventus were beaten 1-0 in the reverse fixture at the Vicente Calderon.