Travel-sick Valencia make a trip to Atletico Madrid as Los Che are looking to pile misery to struggling Rojiblancos, who seem to be losing pace in their La Liga race.
Inconsistency the issue for Atletico Madrid
If there was anything Atletico Madrid were known for over the past few season that it definitely was the reliability. Diego Simeone has transformed his side into a tough nut to crack which would not concede easily and which would be so difficult to beat, but things appeared to have changed in both regards. The main problem Atletico Madrid manager is facing this season however is inconsistency as his team became rather unpredictable. Three consecutive victories in La Liga and Champions League respectively were followed by the 2-1 defeat at the hands of Barcelona and a 1-1 draw at Deportivo La Coruna last time out. Atletico Madrid were forced to chase the result after conceding early in the match and it was thanks to Antoine Griezmann’s 68th0-minute equalizer that the Atleti saved themselves from the embarrassment. A point at Deportivo La Coruna left Atletico in fourth place in the standings, just one point in front Real Sociedad. The forthcoming game against Valencia is of huge importance for Simeone’s charges who are facing a struggle to hold down the Champions league place until the end of the season.
Diego Simeone will have Saul back from his suspension, but Juanfran, Tiago and Augusto Fernandez are all missing due to their injuries. Striker Fernando Torres has suffered a horror injury against Deportivo La Coruna and will be unavailable for selection as well.
Valencia on the rise?
Los Che have invested a great deal of effort, time and money to build a team that could restore the former glory of this fallen giant of Spain, but things haven’t exactly worked out as planned for Valencia. From that embarrassing experiment with Gary Neville to a failed project with Cesare Prandelli, La Liga side have changed four different managers in 2016 alone, before deciding to bring back a man who was in charge of the team for a month in 2015, acting as a caretaker following the departure of Nuno Espirito Santo. Salvador Gonzales Voro has taken the reins in December 2016 and is doing his best to make Valencia great again. His most notable result came earlier in February when Los Che pulled off a shocker against Real Madrid, stunning Los Blancos to a 2-1 victory. It is one of the three wins Valencia recorded in their last four matches and the forthcoming clash against another club from Madrid will be a definite test to Valencia’s credentials as Los Che look to make a step forward in the La Liga standings. It will not be easy, but Voro will not travel to Madrid wearing a white flag.
Nani and Martin Montoya have been ruled out for ten days now and will not be able to help their team, whereas Santi Mina and Rodrigo are also on the injury list for Los Che with a knee injury and an ankle problem, respectively.
The forthcoming match at Vicente Calderon is of great importance for both sides, who are looking to boost their morals and chances of making a step upward in the La Liga standings. Atletico Madrid are given the slight edge over travel-sick Valencia, who won only two of their last ten away matches, but Los Rojiblancos will need to be on top of their game to record a win.
Top pick: Both teams to score – yes 2.05 (21/20) @188Bet
Alternative pick 1: Asian handicap +1 Valencia 2.09 (109/100) @Bet365
Alternative pick 2: Draw no Bet – Valencia 4/1 (5.00) @Ladbrokes