Atletico’s title credentials face Barca check


Madrid – La Liga’s solely unbeaten aspect, Atletico Madrid may have their title aspirations put to the check this weekend after they host Barcelona.

Atleti have began the season in wonderful fettle, profitable 5 and drawing two of their seven fixtures to sit down three factors behind desk toppers Actual Sociedad, with two video games in hand.

Barcelona, in the meantime, have had shaky begin underneath new coach Ronald Koeman and after defeats to Actual Madrid and Getafe the Catalans can ill-afford one other slip up.

Taking a number of the spice out out the sport, Atletico’s Luis Suarez is sort of sure to overlook a reunion along with his former membership after testing constructive for Covid-19 whereas on worldwide responsibility earlier this week. The Uruguayan ahead was instructed he may go away the Camp Nou by Koeman in the summertime, however has proven Barca what they’re lacking in latest weeks with 5 targets in six appearances.

Since taking on at Atletico in 2011, Diego Simeone has triumphed over Barca within the Champions League however by no means crushed them in a La Liga sport, and plenty of observers suspect that tomorrow will probably be his greatest likelihood to vary that statistic.

Simeone’s aspect will go into the match unbeaten of their final 18 residence video games within the league; their final defeat coming by the hands of Barcelona in December final yr.

Lucas Torreira joins countryman Suarez on the absentee listing for Atleti, having additionally examined constructive for Covid-19, and Hector Herrera is out with a hamstring concern. Nonetheless there may be higher information with ahead Diego Costa returning to coaching this week.

Barcelona will probably be with out Ansu Fati, who’s a long-term absentee with a knee concern, whereas Sergio Busquets may even miss the journey to the capital after injuring himself on worldwide responsibility.

Elsewhere, on the again of their humiliating Four-1 defeat to Valencia, Actual Madrid go to second-placed Villarreal tomorrow with an damage disaster of their very own.

Captain Sergio Ramos and defenive accomplice Raphael Varane each limped off throughout midweek internationals. The duo be a part of the likes of forwards Karim Benzema and Eden Hazard as doubts for the journey, whereas midfielder Federico Valverde stays absent with a damaged leg.

The weekend’s motion begins with Osasuna internet hosting Huesca tonight, whereas early tempo setters Sociedad go to Cadiz on Sunday. – Reuters