Saturday, July 11, 2020

Prediction: Barcelona vs Atletico Madrid

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 7/10

Bookmaker: 888sport

The leaders in La Liga, FC Barcelona, will aim to take another step towards retaining the league title this Saturday when they take on a rising Atletico Madrid side. Los Colchoneros sit in second place and appear to be Barca’s lone threat on the title race. Therefore, this game appears key to decide the fate of both clubs. Kick-off for this thrilling encounter is slated at 19:45 BST.

FC Barcelona

Los Blaugranas have dominated the competition and they deservedly lead the standings with an eight-point over this game’s opponents. The second-best team at home (W11, D3, L1) and the top side on the road (W10, D4, L1), Ernesto Valverde’s men can flat-out dominate the competition regardless of the venue they’re playing. Part of that should be attributed to the fact that they own the league’s best attacking unit with 79 goals, and more than half of those strikes (44) have come in front of their fans. They’re coming off a 4-4 draw against Villarreal in their most recent match, but Barca haven’t suffered a league defeat since November 11, 2018. And considering the kind of run they’ve been going in, it’s extremely hard to bet against them right now. Especially knowing they have scored at least three goals in four of their last five league outings. That kind of firepower should scare any defensive unit. But will it be enough to intimidate Atletico?

Team News

Rafinha (knee) and Arturo Vidal (suspension) have both been ruled out for this match.

Jasper Cillessen (hip) and Ousmane Dembele (muscle) are doubtful. However, the French has the most realistic chance of playing of the two.

Atletico Madrid

Diego Simeone’s men know this is a must-win match. If Atletico pull the upset and win here, they would create a wide-open race for the league title since the differential at the top would only be five points with seven matches left. But if they lose, then the margin would be 11 points with 21 to be played for. That’s just too much, and Los Colchoneros can’t let this game slip away from their hands. Even though they will be playing away from home, Atletico have shown the ability to get positive results on the road – as their W6, D6, L3 away record shows. And to make things even better, the Madrid-based side enter this game with a W3, L1 mark in their last four away encounters. On good form and motivated to clinch a positive result, this is the time Atletico need to show what they’re made of. Because if they drop points in this one. they will be at risk of losing the league title for good. And this is the only piece of silverware they can win until the season ends.

Team News

Thomas Lemar has been ruled out due to a muscle injury. Lucas Hernandez is done for the season with a knee problem.

Several Atletico players are doubtful for this one. The list includes Diego Costa (thigh), Borja Garces (knee) and Alvaro Morata (ankle).

Key Factors to Consider

  • Barca are undefeated in their last five H2H meetings with Atletico Madrid in all competitions (W2, D3).
  • 46.67% of Barcelona’s league games have featured over 3.5 total goals.
  • Barca own the best attack in the league with 79 goals scored. Meanwhile, Atletico have the best defence with only 19 goals conceded.
  • Four of the last five H2H matches have seen under 2.5 goals. Also four of those five have seen both sides scoring.
  • Atletico Madrid last defeated Barcelona at Camp Nou in 2006. Since then, Barca own a W9, D3 mark in Liga matches at home against Los Colchoneros.


Barcelona own the best attack in the league, while Atletico own the best defence. But given the nature of this game, I believe both sides will be extremely positive.

Therefore, I think this one could end with both teams scoring.

Verdict: Both teams to score – yes

Best Odds: 7/10

Bookmaker: 888sport


Juan Pablo Aravena

A freelance writer and sports analyst with almost five years of experience in the industry before joining SoccerNews, Juan Pablo Aravena is based in Chile and currently contributes to several publications and websites including SoccerNews, 12up, and Sports From The Basement, while also working as a fantasy beat writer for RotoWire, as a database editor for EA Sports, and as a football analyst for SmartOdds and InsideFutbol. His areas of focus are Serie A, Bundesliga, Premier League, LaLiga, and Ligue 1, but he has also written about MLS and South American football in the past.



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