It’s Sevilla that play host to Atlético Madrid on Sunday evening, with Simeone’s men heading to the Ramon Sánchez Pizjuán knowing that a tough test awaits them in their first away match of the season.
Kick-off in Andalusia is set for 20:30 CEST.
It’s been a busy week since Atlético’s 1-0 opening day victory over Las Palmas last Saturday.
Their transfer business is pretty much done following the signing of Matias Kranevitter and Santos Borré, although both will stay at their current clubs until 2016. Only Siqueira is still expected to leave the Calderón.
Sevilla on the other hand, do have a flagship summer signing available to play on Sunday. Fernando Llorente completed his move from Juventus to Seville this week, and will be available to start for Unai Emery’s men.
Jesus Gámez is expected to start at left-back after an injury to Filipe Luís. The returning Atlético defender has a hamstring injury, although he has already resumed training with the group.
“Filipe is out,” said Simeone at his pre-match press conference. “He is not able to play. Gámez will come in and try to recreate some of the performances he put in last season.”
It’s clear the coach does not count on Guilherme Siqueira.
Sevilla started their season with a 0-0 draw against Málaga. This game is likely to be Atlético’s first real game against one of their tough rivals.
A good omen for El Cholo, is that Atlético haven’t lost to Sevilla since October 2010.
“We’re playing an important match, against a very strong team,” Cholo told the media.
“They are very well matched to us. I can see they are a mirror in certain situations, with a very competitive coach who has managed to reinvent the team.”
The same fixture last season ended in a 0-0 draw, with some questionable officiating decisions by Clos Gómez. Atlético received seven yellow cards that day.
The same man is set to referee on Sunday.
Out for Sevilla are Nico Pareja through injury, and Steven N’Zonzi through suspension.
While the rest of the team should pick itself, Simeone has yet to decide who will start up-front for los Rojiblancos.
“Tomorrow, we will decide whether Vietto, Jackon or Torres will play,” he teased the assembled reporters.
If Vietto does pull on the red and white, it will be his debut for Atlético after signing from Villarreal in the summer.
Fernando Torres on the other hand, has never won a game at the Ramon Sánchez Pizjuán. He’s never scored there either.
Here’s hoping he breaks his duck on Sunday.
Atlético squad to face Sevilla:
Goalkeepers: Moyá, Oblak
Defenders: Godín, Savic, Gámez, Juanfran, Giménez
Midfielders: Tiago, Koke, Raúl García, Óliver, Gabi, Saúl, Carrasco
Forwards: Griezmann, Torres, Jackson, Correa, Vietto