With the Catalans’ post-Messi period proving to be as unpleasant as many predicted, Diego Simeone’s side should be able to inflict even more agony on them.
Barcelona will play Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano in the greatest match of the season thus far in La Liga.
The Blaugrana are on the edge of a catastrophe, with under-fire manager Ronald Koeman’s team losing both of their first Champions League group games and lying five points behind the league leaders in La Liga.
Although Koeman’s position remains in severe jeopardy, a win in Madrid would give some minor comfort.
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After a scoreless draw with Brighton, Arsenal’s offensive output fell to a 35-year low.
Atletico, on the other hand, has had a shaky start to the season, but the Rojiblancos’ propensity for scoring late goals has saved them time and time again.
The most recent odds for Atletico Madrid vs. Barcelona
Barcelona have failed to win any of their past four competitive meetings against Diego Simeone’s side, and are placed at 3/1 (4.00) with bet365 as clear underdogs.
Last season, Atletico won 1-0 in this match and are available at 10/11 (1.91) with the draw at 5/2. (3.50).
Team news for Atletico Madrid vs. Barcelona
The hosts are missing Geoffrey Kondogbia, who is banned, while Kieron Trippier, who has an ankle injury, is a doubt.
Ousmane Dembele, Sergio Aguero, and Martin Braithwaite are still sidelined for the visitors, while Jordi Alba is uncertain due to a thigh ailment that has kept him out for the past two weeks.
Preview: Atletico Madrid vs. Barcelona
Neither team has been in convincing form recently, and although Barca has been disappointing in recent weeks, Atletico has been able to grind out victories.
Barca’s defense has been particularly weak this season, with the Blaugrana maintaining only two clean sheets in eight competitive matches, with struggling Granada and Getafe both scored against them.
Bottom-of-the-table, to be sure. In their 2-1 defeat at Camp Nou a few weeks back, Getafe had more shots than Barca, and teams have been able to generate plenty of chances against Koeman’s men.
Despite the fact that Atleti has failed to score in three of their previous five games, its familiar attacking line is far more spectacular than their Catalan opponents.
Both Luis Suarez and Antoine Griezmann scored in midweek, the latter scoring for the first time since his return to the Spanish capital, and both players will be fired up to face their old employers.
Predictions and suggestions for Atletico Madrid vs. Barcelona
Atletico’s deep and talented group is completely unified behind its renowned coach, in stark contrast to Barcelona’s present contentious scenario.
The price of 10/11 (1.91) for a home win is tempting, but 8/1 (9.00) for Atletico to come from behind to win also appeals, with this pick paying off in three of their past six games.
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At the time of writing, the odds were accurate. Please use caution when gambling.