Match : Barcelona vs Atletico Madrid
Competition : Spain – La Liga
Time / Date : 17:15h / 4 March 2018
Venue : Camp Nou
The gap between Barcelona and Atletico Madrid has been reduced to five points recently, with Ernesto Valverde’s side dropping points against Getafe, Espanyol and Las Palmas.
Ernesto Valverde made some crucial mistakes in setting up the starting lineup for mid-week’s clash with Las Palmas as he left the likes of Ousmane Dembele and Philippe Coutinho on the bench. Barca have thus once again lacked the inspiration moving forward and they would have hardly sored at all against one of the league’s worst defensive lines it if wasn’t for Lionel Messi and his moment of brilliance.
Atletico Madrid definitely come into the game as the form favourites following their impressive attacking showings in drubbings of Sevilla and Leganes in the last couple of rounds. Diego Simeone’s star man Antoine Griezmann has been the catalyst for such a hot run of form as the Frenchman has bagged an impressive seven-goal tally in these two games. Given that Barcelona’s defensive line has started to show signs of vulnerabilities allowing a goal in each of last three matches in all competitions, Griezmann could easily be the difference-maker here.
Nélson Semedo (Hamstring Injury), Sergi Samper (Malleolar injury)
Since knocking Barcelona out of the Champions League in 2016, Atleti have won none of the five meetings. The last two meetings at Camp Nou have produced 1-1 draws. Atleti haven’t won away to Barcelona in 17 attempts in all competitions.
Backing goals at both ends looks to be by far the best of the betting options here since Atleti have bagged nine goals in cast two wins over Sevilla and Leganes.