Football

PREVIEW:Atletico Madrid Vs Liverpool- Prediction, Team News And More


Atletico Madrid host Liverpool in a rematch of last year’s round-of-16 clash where Los Rojiblancos triumphed.

 

Diego Simeone’s side are embroiled in a dogfight for the upper echelons of the league table, having taken 17 points from eight games to sit 4th. However, that is not to say they are not having problems as well. The watertight defence of yesteryears has already conceded seven goals across all competitions.

 

Their European campaign has yielded a draw and a last-gasp win against AC Milan with a penalty in the final minute of injury time. Luis Suarez remains their most potent goal threat while a welcome return to form of Joao Felix against Barcelona could see him start too.

 

Much like their opponents, Liverpool are also making inroads up the Premier League, as they remain the only undefeated side. Jurgen Klopp has turned the Reds into a goal-scoring machine, having already scored 22 goals in eight games. Their famed attacking trio has been firing on all cylinders, with Roberto Firmino even netting a hat-trick against Watford over the weekend.

 

A nervy win over the Rosseneri in their opening group match was followed by an emphatic thumping of Porto as Liverpool look to cement their status as one of the favourites for the trophy by exacting revenge.

 

TEAM NEWS

Liverpool have no fresh injuries to report of with Curtis Jones, Thiago and Harvey Elliott remaining the only absentees.

 

PROBABLE LINE-UP: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Matip, Robertson; Keita, Henderson, Milner; Firmino, Mane, Salah

 

Simeone is without Matheus Cunha who is dealing with a thigh injury, while Stefan Savic and Geoffrey Kondogbia are suspended for this crunch clash.

 

PROBABLE LINE-UP: Oblak; Felipe, Hermoso, Gimenez; Trippier, De Paul, Koke, Lemar, Carrasco; Suarez, Felix

 

GAMECHANGERS

Old boy Suarez, despite his inclining age, is the go-to guy up top for Atletico. The Uruguayan has already scored five times this season but it is his overall gameplay that deserves more attention. The ability to play off the wingbacks who make inside runs along with dropping deep to link up with the midfielders makes him an all-around threat.

 

Suarez’s cunning and agility are further helped given how the runners in behind will draw the defenders out of position. Furthermore, with Liverpool’s fullbacks very much attack-minded, Suarez will have space to get his shots away frequently too. Van Dijk and Matip have shown their fragility at times, conceding thrice and twice against Brentford and Manchester City respectively over the past few weeks.

 

Klopp has seemingly found another gear in Salah, with the Egyptian scaling new heights ever since the start of the season. 10 goals and four assists have earned him the plaudits of “world-class” and “best player” in Europe currently. However, it is not just his prowess for scoring that is helping his game.

 

Salah’s pace, ability to get by defenders with guile and trickery as well as having the eye for the final killer passing uplift the rest of the attackers too. Atletico’s three-man defence will need to double team Salah whenever he has the ball, with one of Lodi or Carrasco dropping back often to stop goal scoring chances.

 

Moreover, Simeone’s centre-backs have not had the best of starts to the season as highlighted above with Savic missing being another key weakness.

 

PREDICTIONS

Both teams come into the game in a rich vein of form, but the Spanish side know they are not at their best yet. Though they will have had a lot more rest to prepare, Atletico know a tougher test than last season awaits. On the other side, Liverpool will look to add another win to keep their dominant streak going. FootTheBall predicts a 2-1 win for the Reds.







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