Sergio Agüero was the big question-mark ahead of our match against Barcelona. The Argentine trained with the team today and has been included in the match selection, although coach Quique Sánchez Flores still isn’t sure if Kun can play:
“Before the match we will see if he can play, it hasn’t been decided yet. If we have even the slightest doubt, he won’t play.”
The coach also explained why Filipe still hasn’t featured in a league match:
“Filipe knows when he will be a starter. Like Tiago, we have a specific plan with Filipe, because he has joined pre-season later than some of his teammates. The fans will have to be patient, but Filipe himself knows exactly when he’ll play.”
Tomas Ujfalusi also returns to the team, and Quique assured the Czech is ready to start. Here’s our full match selection. Surprisingly all 23 available players have been included, but five more will be cut from the list before kick-off.
Goalkeepers: De Gea, Joel
Defenders: Valera, López, Filipe, Godín, Juanito, Ujfalusi, Domínguez, Perea, Pulido
Midfielders: Mario Suárez, Tiago, Camacho, Raúl García, Fran Mérida, Assunção, Koke
Forwards: Forlán, Agüero, Reyes, Simão and Diego Costa.
Pep Guardiola will be without Eric Abidal, who has travelled to Martinique to support his grandfather who has fallen ill.
This opens up some opportunities, because as we pointed out in the Atlético – Barcelona match preview last season José Antonio Reyes continually got the better of Maxwell.
Considering last season’s match, Guardiola might decide to use signing Adriano at left-back.
Barcelona match selection:
Goalkeepers: Valdés, Pinto
Defenders: Maxwell, Alves, Piqué, Puyol, Milito, Adriano
Midfielders: Busquets, Mascherano, Xavi, Iniesta, Keita, Thiago
Forwards: Messi, Pedro, Villa and Bojan.
Don’t forget to predict on this match in the AtléticoFans Prediction League!