Match preview: Rayo vs. Atlético

Can Atleti win another Madrid derby?

Rojiblancos eagerly anticipate seeing  Costa's pearly whites again  (sports.terra.com)

Rojiblancos eagerly anticipate seeing
Costa's pearly whites again
(sports.terra.com)

Atlético will travel to their city neighbours in Vallecas this Sunday for their return match, set for 19:00 CET.

The colchoneros will need all three points to leap-frog Real Madrid again, who won their match 2-0 at the Bernabéu. If the Rojiblancos win this derby, they can retain their title of best Madrid-based team.

Back in August, we beat Rayo 5-0 at home, and are partly responsible for their position in the table, our opponents currently sitting second to last spot. They have collected only 16 points thus far, and have conceded the most goals in the league over 20 games: 47.

Cholo spoke to the press earlier today and told reporters he thinks Rayo will continue to play their attacking style football.

“Last year we had a difficult match in Vallecas and I think we’ll experience a match just like it.”

“They play with a lot of enthusiasm. We will need to work hard.”

While our opponents can focus on just the one weekly match, Atleti have been playing twice a week and, without rotating, players seem somewhat tired. Simeone acknowledged this but also said the players are getting accustomed.

“The team is competitive in each competition we play.”

When Cholo started out at the Calderón, the team played both La Liga and Europa League. Last season we played those two competitions together with the Copa del Rey.

“We’re in January now and still playing three competitions.”

“One of the staff’s objectives is making the players play twice a week so it can become natural habit.”

Diego Costa will return to Vallecas, where he played on loan two seasons ago, and look to end his scoreless drought of 2014. Simeone is not worried about our striker’s ‘less good form’ though.

“Costa worked well the other day. He’s improved over the previous games.”

“We hope the goal will come since it’s important for him and the team and tomorrow will be a good moment.”

Falcao had a similar problem last season. He wasn’t able to find the back of the net either at this stage of the season. But the goal did come, and Falcao continued to score. Diego Costa is still only four goals behind the Golden Ball winner Cristiano Ronaldo.

“So that’s not that bad,” Cholo claimed.

With Juanfran suspended after receiving his fifth yellow card against Sevilla, Simeone will probably place Manquillo at right back. New signing José Sosa might get a chance at well. Who we won’t see are Guilavogui, who is out injured, and neither Giménez nor Mario, who were left out due to tactical reasons.

Saúl Ñiguez, who is on loan from Atleti, is eligible to play the derby and will start for Rayo.

Atlético match selection:
Goalkeepers: Aranzubia, Courtois
Defenders: Godín, Filipe Luís, Alderweireld, Manquillo, Insúa, Miranda
Midfielders: Tiago, Koke, Raúl García, Arda, Cebolla, Gabi, Óliver, Sosa
Forwards: Adrián, Villa, Diego Costa


  • Yon

    I hope that Manquillo gets the minutes at RB rather than Alderweireld! Him and Oliver are not getting enough chances for my liking!

    Let’s hope Costa can bag himself a goal too, been too long! We need him to hit form again for the CL games coming up!

  • kris

    Let’s win this match. Rayo Vallecano 0-3 Club Atletico de Madrid. Costa hattrick. HOPEFUL!!! Aupa Atleti!

  • Jeronamo

    Lol Kris you have been off with predictions lately but I think this one may be right

  • Kris

    Lol I hope so Jeronamo. Ajjaa

  • Jimbo_With_the_Dancingshoes

    “Every time I step out onto the pitch at the Calderon I get nervous because I have an obligation to return the love shown by the fans. Our fans are unique because they support us at every moment and understand how difficult it is to compete against Barcelona and Real Madrid. I feel like I’m at home, we are great big family. I’m grateful to the fans”
    – Arda Turan

  • kris

    Sosa takes Koke’s place, Manquillo takes Juanfran’s place. Still disappointed that Oliver isn’t getting any chances at all. Hopefully, Sosa can shine.

  • Ty Gambo

    How has Saúl performed so far this season?
    Hope Oli can make a second half appearance

  • Bushdoctor

    I love Arda! Aupa atletì!!!!

  • Arjit

    I saw that article jimbo, put a smile on my face. I really wish we could base our team more around Arda or at least get him involved more. He is easily top 10 in the world in his role when he’s on his game and getting involved but that doesn’t happen as often as we’d like.

  • Adnan Khan

    Simeone should give Oliver torres more time in games, this is not enough for his growth. We don’t want him to leave, if he is not going to use him, send him on a loan to a club where he can play more. Then till next season we will have experienced oliver torres 🙂

  • kris

    Athletic play beautiful football, man. Valverde has turned them in to some dangerous beasts. Currently winning 5-1 against a 10-man Osasuna, away. I love how they only have Basque players and no debt. Greatly run club as of late.

  • Ahmad Hossainy

    Simeone is looking for his 50th win in La Liga
    Koke is looking for his 100th game in La Liga
    Villa is looking for his 182nd goal in La Liga, to tie with Sevilla Legend Juan Arza and become 11th on La Liga all-time top scorers table

    Do we need any more reasons to play a great game and have a great result ?!

    Saul played against us in the 1st round, and he is playing against us tonight,
    I can not stop thinking : what if this was the last game in the season, and we need to win to be Champions, or to qualify to UCL, how will the loanee feel, and is he going to play his best and knock his original team out of the CL, or relegate them to Segunda then the very next day he will join them again ?!

    It should be a rule -not just an option- that the loanee not be allowed to play against his original team

    It’s a rule in EPL .. who are always a step ahead of all other leagues in the world, and 10 steps ahead of La Liga

  • kris

    My feelings exactly about the loanee rule, Ahmad. Thank you.

  • Jeronamo

    Villaaaaaa!!!

  • kris

    What is wrong with Costa? he would have scored that beautifully in the first half of the season. WOW. Come on Costa!While I was typing that goal for Villa. Assist by Costa!! Rayo Vallecano 0-1 Atletico de Madrid.

  • kris

    Penalty! My god. Are you serious right now? Bad mistake Manquillo.

  • kris

    Saved by Courtois!

  • Jeronamo

    That is no fucking penalty.. great save by courtois

  • Jeronamo

    Kris that was a dive tho

  • Brad

    Costa has too much on his mind…Atleti should have taken him completely off the table for the January transfer window…

  • kris

    It kind of was a dive, but not really either. He sold it well.

  • Brad

    It was more of a trip than a dive…

  • Brad

    Also, where is our offense?

  • kris

    Such an unselfish play by Sosa. Arda goal. 0-2.

  • Brad

    Ok, there’s our offense

  • kris

    There’s our offense. Villa to Costa to Sosa to Arda=goal.

  • Jeronamo

    There it is brad.. lovely team goal.. nice selflessness by Sosa

  • kris

    lol Brad.

  • Brad

    Ask and you shall receive i guess

  • Jeronamo

    Lol I saw that late

  • kris

    Damnit Costa injured.

  • Jeronamo

    Smh this is why we NEED to rotate smartly

  • kris

    I hope Costa is fine. I guess no hattrick for him today if he has to be subbed out.

  • Brad

    On the replay it looked like he just got spiked. He’s jogging, so that’s a good sign

  • Jeronamo

    He seens fine tho but that is one good scare

  • Jeronamo

    Seems*

  • pantic#10

    damn…Diego Costa injured….
    I like what i see so far.
    great offensive playing by Villa, Arda and Sosa. and Costa of course.

  • Will

    Really impressive save by Courtois.
    And incredible assist by Sosa.

  • Will
  • kris

    Arda is fucking fantastic! GOD!! He plays so awesome in tight spaces.

  • kris

    Bad mistake in the defense. 1-2. Horrible defensive display right there.

  • Brad

    Can we please stop shooting ourselves in the foot…

  • Jeronamo

    Villa seems to be in fine spirits today

  • Brad

    ARDA!!!

  • kris

    Brace TURAN! Go for a hattrick. Mr. Turkey.

  • Jeronamo

    Arda!!!

  • Jeronamo

    Lmao assisted by Saul

  • kris

    LOL the irony. ahha.

  • Jeronamo

    We looked shaky defensively late there so I’m happy for half time

  • Brad

    I’m happy to be up by two at half time!

  • Arjit

    Fun game to watch IMO. Defense looks unusually shaky but our passing with arda-koke-filipe and sometimes Villa looks great in tight spaces.

  • Jeronamo

    And sosa doesn’t look bad today either

  • Brad

    Sosa looks like he’s found his groove in the team

  • Jeronamo

    Let’s hope so

  • kris

    Link up play today looks amazing from the whole team. Liking it.

  • kris

    Arda wants that hattrick. And I love when we shoot from long range at times.

  • Brad

    Glad Óliver is going to get some playing time

  • Arjit

    OLIVEERRRRR

  • kris

    What the hell? OLIVER? Oh my god.. This is why you have to give him more playing time. .

  • Brad

    It looked like a dislocated shoulder…I don’t know how that happens in this sport…

  • pantic#10

    i think it’s a dislocated shoulder like Brad said.
    Sooooo unlucky….

  • Adnan Khan

    damn, this is sad. i hope it’s not a serious injury. poor poor oliver torres 🙁

  • kris

    Forreals Brad. I don’t see how that happens in this sport either. It will probably take him months to recover now. SOO UNLUCKY!!Puyol had the same injury, but much worse.

  • Brad

    GOAL Diego Costa!

  • kris

    FINALLY DIEGO COSTA!! HOW WELL WAS THAT FROM THE START ON THE LEFT!! FILIPE is a goddamn beast!!I don’t see how he didn’t win the Ballon d’Or. 2014 is all his.

  • kris

    We have a habit of conceding goals against Rayo. I don’t know WHYY!..

  • Jimbo_With_The_Dancingshoes

    What a match

  • Brad

    Not conceding goals would have really helped our goal differential

  • pantic#10

    looks like it’s an owngoal by Saul in the slow motion. and not Diego Costa.
    Anyway.
    2-4.
    do not stupid things guys…please keep calm and win!

  • kris

    Is Villa the 11th highest scorer in La Liga now, Ahmad? Good match by El Guaje.

  • Brad

    So Saul assists one goal and scores the other for us?

  • kris

    It’s still an Atleti player that scored. LOL.

  • Adnan Khan

    Well done Saul Niguez 🙂

  • kris

    Just shows how much Saul loves Atleti!

  • Brad

    We should really not be getting this banged up playing Rayo…

  • pantic#10

    terrible match by Saul… 🙂
    Courtois saved the match. (the penalty and some great saves.).

  • Adnan Khan

    Oliver may have to take a operation. this is really sad, because he is so young and have much to prove and now he will maybe be out rest of the season.
    Animo Oliver torres

  • kris

    Animo Oliver. Get well soon as fast as possible to show the world you truly are the best at what you do!!