Competition: Europa League
Market: Atletico Madrid to beat Sporting Lisbon
Odds: 1/3 @ Bet365
After dropping out of the Champions League at the group stages and with their La Liga dreams all but over, Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid side know that the Europa League is their most realistic chance of lifting silverware this year. On Thursday night, Sporting Lisbon will travel to the Wanda Metropolitano.
For Diego Simeone’s Red and Whites, although Los Rojiblancos had established themselves as Champions League heavyweights under their Argentinian boss, a disappointing third-place finish has seen Atletico drop into the Europa League and it now stands as their only chance to lift a piece of silverware this season. Now sat nine-points adrift of Barcelona at the head of the La Liga table, while they may also be out of this years Copa del Rey, Atletico have been in stellar form in the Europa League this year. In their four matchups, Atletico have won all four of their outings and have scored 13 goals on the way. Their recent success can be put down to French forward Antoine Griezmann, the forward has 10 goals in has last seven appearances for Atletico.
As for Jorge Jesus’s Sporting Lisbon side, much like their hosts on Thursday night, the Lions were also unable to make an impact in the Champions League this season and after falling behind Barcelona and Juventus, Sporting know that they will face another tough test against a high-flying Atletico side. After scrapping past both Astana and Viktoria Plzen to reach the semi-finals, the Portuguese visitors haven’t been in great form recently either. They have lost three of their last six games in all competitions, including a defeat to Braga on Saturday and their second leg loss to Viktoria Plzen, which saw them clinch an away goals victory in extra time. In fact, away from home Sporting Lisbon have lost five of their last eight competitive games and have failed to score in three of them.
Bet: Atletico Madrid 1/3 to beat Sporting Lisbon in Thursdays Europa League quarter-final 1/3 @ Bet365>>
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