Prediction: Atletico Madrid vs Elche – Soccer News


Verdict: Atletico Madrid win to nil

Best Odds: 19/20

Bookmaker: Unibet

Hoping to find a La Liga boost on their return from the World Cup break, Atletico Madrid will welcome Elche to the Estadio Metropolitano on Thursday night.

Atletico Madrid

Starting with the hosts, although Atletico Madrid might have managed to cruise their way to another Champions League finish last season, the Spanish giants have shown some rather glaring issues this time around. Last seen heading into the World Cup’s winter break with a shock 1-0 loss away at Mallorca on November 9th, Diego Simeone’s men mark their return to action with just a single win from their last five La Liga matchups. With that run highlighted by an action-packed 3-2 loss at the hands of Cadiz, Los Colchoneros have also gained a reputation for their inconsistencies on home soil. Along with having to settle for back-to-back 1-1 draws against Rayo Vallecano and Espanyol, Atletico have mustered just a sole win from any of their previous four contests at the Estadio Metropolitano. Opening Thursday’s showdown sat outside the top-four, Simeone’s side will be desperate to pick up a La Liga boost here.

Team News

After all featuring in this winter’s World Cup final, Atletico could welcome back the likes of Rodrigo De Paul, Nahuel Molina, Angel Correa and Antoine Griezmann on Thursday night.

Spain international Alvaro Morata is expected to lead Simeone’s charge in midweek.

Elche

As for the visitors, last seen heading into the World Cup break with a worrying 2-1 loss at home against Genoa on November 8th, it is fair to say that Elche find themselves at the heart of a La Liga nightmare. Although Pablo Machín’s men might have came close to snatching a top-half finish last season, the Whites have really come crashing back down to earth this time around. Marking their return on Thursday night sat rock-bottom of the table and already eight points adrift of safety, Elche are freefalling their way towards a Segunda return in the New Year. Mustering just four points from any of their 14 La Liga showdowns this season, they should also be worried by a dreadful record against Thursday’s opponents. In fact, along with getting hit with a 2-0 loss when they welcome Atletico to the Estadio Manuel Martínez Valero back in May, Elche have lost each of their previous five meetings against the former champions.

Team News

Elche have confirmed that the duo of John Donald and Jony Alamo will once again miss out on Thursday night as they are still dealing with respective injury issues.

While 33-year-old Josan might still be dealing with a muscle injury, the midweek guests are hopeful that the ex-Albacete star can feature here.

Key Factors to Consider

  • When the two sides last faced off on May 11th, Atletico Madrid picked up a 2-0 victory at the Estadio Manuel Martínez Valero.
  • Thursday’s hosts have won each of their previous five meetings against Elche by an aggregate score of 10-1.
  • Likewise, the former Spanish champions are unbeaten in all of their last 10 meetings against the leading relegation scrappers – a run that stems back to 2002.
  • Elche have collected just four points from their 14 La Liga appearances so far this season.
  • Likewise, Thursday’s guests have conceded 18 strikes from their seven La Liga away fixtures this season.

Conclusion

Although Atletico might have shown a string of inconsistencies this season, Thursday’s hosts should be smelling a golden chance here. Desperate to find a route into the top-four here, the former champions will be looking to cash in on an Elche squad who are firmly at the heart of a La Liga nightmare. With the midweek guests managing to bag just four points from their first 14 top-flight appearances, it should also be noted that Atletico hold a rampant record against the leading relegation scrappers. Winning each of their previous five meetings against Elche by an aggregate score of 10-1, it is hard to see anything other than a home victory here.

Verdict: Atletico Madrid win to nil

Best Odds: 19/20

Bookmaker: Unibet



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