Juventus v Olympiacos: Pirlo talks up importance of victory

Juventus playmaker Andrea Pirlo feels Tuesday's UEFA Champions League clash with Olympiacos is "like a final" for the Italian giants.

The three-time defending Serie A champions are in need of a positive result, or they could face an improbable task to qualify from Group A.

Away defeats at Atletico Madrid and Olympiacos A have left them with three points from as many matches, and another slip-up could prove costly for a side who failed reach the knockout stages last term.

Both Atletico and Olympiacos are three points ahead of Juve, who bounced back from a four-match winless run on the road in all competitions with a 2-0 league success at Empoli on Saturday.

Pirlo opened the scoring on that occasion, with coach Massimilano Allegri hoping his first goal of the campaign will be "a psychological breakthrough" for the 35-year-old this season.

And the veteran is under no illusions as to the importance of Tuesday's match, telling Juventus' official website: "It [Saturday's win] was an important sign, mainly for ourselves.

"That enables us to prepare as best we can for Tuesday's game.

"It's like a final and we must put in a great performance because only one result will do."

Allegri had described Juve's recent away form as a "disaster" prior to the Empoli trip, so the three points are sure to have come as a welcome relief for the new coach.

He will also take heart from Alvaro Morata's goal, with the Spaniard impressing in recent cameos.

Juve - three points clear of Roma at the top of Serie A - meet an Olympiacos side who were frustrated in a goalless draw at Asteras Tripolis on Saturday.

The defending Greek Super League champions risked falling further behind leaders PAOK with the stalemate, which came despite the hosts being reduced to 10 men in the first half.

Olympiacos boss Michel rested Ibrahim Afellay, Leandro Salino and Delvin N'Dinga for the draw, while Botia missed out due to a viral infection.

Fans of the club will not have happy memories of their last visit to Turin as Juve romped to a 7-0 win. David Trezeguet scored twice for the hosts in the group stage match in December 2003.

Olympiacos' home form in the Champions League in recent years has been outstanding, with victories over Arsenal, Manchester United and Atletico Madrid particularly notable.

And of course they beat Juve 1-0 at the venue last month - Pajtim Kasami's winner sure to give them further confidence.