Valencia vs Atletico Madrid
Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid could go top of La Liga this weekend if they can win a tough challenge against Valencia at the Mestalla and results elsewhere go their way.
Los Rojiblancos are currently in second place and they are three points behind Real Sociedad. But with two games in hand and a goal difference, they can surely close the gap.
Sociedad don’t play until Sunday night and then they meet the in-form Villarreal who currently occupy third place.
The La Liga 2020 betting odds point to an away win and for a day at least first place for Atleti, though Simeone will remind his players what happened the last time Valencia met a Madrid giant.
Can Valencia build on recent success?
Javi Gracia’s team came up with a stunning performance to beat Real Madrid 4-1 recently, in an extraordinary match which saw Carlos Soler convert three penalties while Los Blancos’ centre-back Raphael Varane added an own goal.
It was one of the biggest surprises of the campaign so far that this SBOTOP writer has witnessed and it ended a disappointing run of results for Valencia.
Los Che followed that up with an entertaining 2-2 draw with Alaves on Monday night when another young striker Manu Vallejo was on target, as was centre-back Hugo Guillamon.
Four points from two games mean Valencia sit among a group of five teams on 12 points just outside the European places, and Gracia will hope to build on that.
He lost some key players in the summer transfer window, including the influential Dani Parejo. But the club’s youth products, including Soler and Guillamon, are beginning to step up.
However, Gracia is without injured keeper Jasper Cillesen for the clash with Atletico and that will be a worry to Valencia fans.
Captain Koke can lead Atleti to the top
Los Rojiblancos come into this match on the back of a 0-0 draw in the Champions League against Lokomotiv Moscow.
It’s a game they should have won. But despite their domination, Atleti just couldn’t break down a stubborn Russian defence.
Koke made his 100th European appearance for the club which is more than any Atleti player in history, and the inspirational 28-year-old is leading his home city club on an impressive run in the league with five victories on the run lifting them to the brink of the summit.
Atleti got the better of Barcelona with a 1-0 victory last week and that announced them as serious title contenders, now at shorter odds than the Blaugrana and alongside Los Blancos.
Simeone has some injury concerns with striker Diego Costa and midfielder Hector Herrera out, and unfortunately COVID-19 has been a feature of the La Liga 2020 news in recent weeks as it has been in all of Europe’s big leagues.
Uruguay international Luis Suarez and Lucas Torreira tested positive when away with their country and will miss out.
Suarez was absent against the Blaugrana but a goal from Yannick Carrasco won the day, and the form of striker Joao Felix has been a boost.
The young Portugal international has hit five goals already, while winger Angel Correa has made four assists.
The head-to-heads couldn’t be closer as both teams have won 20 matches and there have been 18 draws in the 58 meetings since 1993.
The two clubs last met in February when Gabriel Paulista scored for Valencia as they played out a 2-2 draw.
Even without Suarez, Atleti will be confident of breaching the Valencia defence. Los Che haven’t kept a clean sheet in the last six games, conceding 11 goals during a run of one win, two draws, and three defeats.
Meanwhile, Los Rojiblancos are unbeaten in seven games and have picked up seven points from three on the road.
|Valencia vs Atletico Madrid||1X2 Atletico Madrid @ 1.82|
|November 28, 23:15 (GMT+8)|
Valencia are at odds of 4.40 to win this game and the draw is at 3.45.
Los Che’s young players are capable of going toe to toe with the best in the league, as champions Real Madrid discovered just before the last international break.
But Simeone’s Atleti always have a steely resolve about them and are unlikely to give Valencia the opportunities Los Blancos’ offered.
The hosts’ defence has been conceding an average of two goals a game over the past few weeks and Felix and Correa could exploit any chinks in Los Che’s armour.
0-1 is the most likely score-line at odds of 5.60, but I think 0-2 at 7.80 could well be the outcome.
|A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR () BETS ARE WORTH:|
|= €20 (Highly confident)||= €10 (CONFIDENT)||= €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)|
Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.
CHECK OUT OUR BLOG FOR MORE FOOTBALL STORIES & ODDS
Stay updated with everything sports and betting.