Thursday, January 17, 2019

Prediction: Girona vs Atletico Madrid

Milos Markovic in Free Soccer Predictions 8 Jan 2019

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Verdict: Atletico Madrid

Best Odds: 28/29

Bookmaker: 888sport

Atletico Madrid head into the midweek Copa del Rey action looking to extend their recent unbeaten run which stretches to 14 matches in all competitions. After a highly positive start to the season, Girona have endured a difficult couple of weeks of late and beating the in-form Atletico would most certainly be seen as a first-class upset.

Girona

Four matches without a win have put a serious dent in Girona’s European hopes. With only three points from five La Liga games, the White and Reds sit in ninth pl,ace in the standings with 23 points next to their name.

Their European hopes are far from being destroyed as sixth-placed Real Betis are only three points away and Girona will most certainly be looking to get the most out of their La Liga campaign. Eusebio Sacristan’s men now shift their focus to Copa del Rey with in-form Atletico Madrid coming to town on Wednesday. Despite the reputation of their midweek rival, Girona are unlikely to give up on their 3-5-2 formation with Uruguay international Cristian Stuani leading the line in attack alongside Portu and Borja Garcia breaking forward from behind. Stuani has hit a rich vein of form this season and currently sits behind Luis Suarez and Leo Messi at La Liga top goalscorers’ list with 11 strikes on his tally.

Team News

Eusebio Sacristan is likely to field his strongest side possible for the Atletico Madrid clash. Juanpe, Ramalho and Espinosa will form a defensive wall in front of goalkeeper Bono.

Muniesa is expected to resume his place in the starting line-up after being left out in the 2-2 stalemate at Levante last time out.

Atletico Madrid

Ten-time Copa del Rey winners Atletico Madrid have been somewhat inconsistent over the past few weeks, alternating between wins and draws but Diego Simeone’s men have yet to lose a single game since October and that can be considered quite an achievement.

Los Colchoneros are five points adrift of La Liga leaders Barcelona and will not drop their title chase until the very end. Traditionally a tough nut to crack, Atletico Madrid have only lost one league game this season – while Barcelona have two defeats on their tally – but eight draws in the 2018/19 make all the difference at the table. A shift of focus is at hand for Atleti who are looking for a swift return to winning ways and their first win in 2019 after entering the New Year with a 1-1 draw at Sevilla. A trip to Girona will be a great opportunity for Cholo Simeone to shuffle his deck a bit and Adan, Arias, Gimenez and Vitolo will all be hoping for a place in the starting XI.

Team News

Lucas and Felipe continue their recovery process and will be out of contention for the forthcoming clash.

Nikola Kalinic is a doubt, while Gelson is back in contention after successfully recovering from tonsillitis. Diego Costa remains unavailable due to his left thigh muscle injury.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Girona failed to win any of their last 4 La Liga matches
  • Atletico Madrid are unbeaten in last 14 matches in all competitions
  • Los Colchoneros have last lost an away game in October
  • Last two games between these two rivals ended in a draw
  • Atletico Madrid only lost two matches this entire season

Conclusion

Atletico Madrid are a well-oiled machine more than capable of overcoming underperforming Girona. The hosts have hit a poor patch of late and will be hoping to get back to form but that will be easier said than done given Atletico Madrid’s formidable records this season. Diego Simeone’s men lost only two games this entire campaign and are sure not to be expected to kneel down now.

Verdict: Atletico Madrid

Best Odds: 28/29

Bookmaker: 888sport

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Milos Markovic


Formerly a Chief Editor at the largest sports site in Serbia Sportske.net, Milos Markovic is an avid football writer who contributes to a variety of online football magazines - most prominently Soccernews.com and Futbolgrad.com. His feature articles, editorials, interviews and match analyses have provided informed opinion and views, helping the football aficionados keep up to date on relevant events in world football.

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