Match preview: Atlético vs. Real Zaragoza

Former rojiblancos return to Madrid to get Zaragoza back on track

gabi zaragoza losblanquillos

The Vicente Calderón welcomes back a whole host of former players tomorrow night at 21:00 CEST as Real Zaragoza are in town.

Atlético will be looking to get another three points on the board following a run of three games without a win, whilst Los Blanquillos sit at the foot of the Primera Division following an abysmal start to the season.

In their four fixtures this season, Zaragoza have only managed to notch up two points, both from 0-0 draws at Deportivo and then in midweek at home to Hercules.

In only the second round of La Liga, Zaragoza found themselves 0-5 down at home within 35 minutes. They pulled three back, their only goals this season, but it wasn’t enough to turn the game around.

The attention won’t be on league positions when they arrive in Madrid though. Zaragoza boast three ex Rojiblancos including goalkeeper Leo Franco and striker Florent Sinama-Pongolle.

Zaragoza’s captain Gabi is also a product of Atlético’s youth system, having moved to La Romerada in the summer of 2007.

Atlético will be looking to get a big win on the board after a disappointing fortnight for the club. After beating Athletic away 2-1 in round two, they crashed to a 1-0 defeat in Greece against Aris in the first round of the Europa League, and then a 2-1 defeat at home to Barcelona.

In the midweek La Liga games, Atleti conceded late and took only a point from Valencia at the Mestalla. Quique Sánchez Flores will be highlighting the importance of concentration for the defence after some unimpressive displays from our back four.

Atleti have no new injury worries ahead of the game and Quique will be hoping to welcome Kun Agüero back into the fold, after he continues his recovery from the injury he picked up versus Athletic Bilbao.

It also looks as if Filipe Luis, Atlético’s summer signing from Deportivo, could be set to make his debut for los Rojiblancos after completing a specific conditioning programme to get him to full fitness. The defender hasn’t featured since pre-season for Atleti.

AS is reporting that Tiago trained with the squad on Friday morning and could be set to return from injury against Zaragoza. Raúl García suffered a minor knock in training this week and might be rested.

Tomas Ujfalusi is suspended after his sending off against Barcelona last weekend.

Quique Sánchez Flores has decided to delay the submission of his match selection, as he wants to test Agüero’s fitness on the day of the match. This is the lineup we expect to see tomorrow:

Predicted lineup:

De Gea
Perea – Godín – Domínguez – Filipe
Reyes – Tiago – Assunção – Simão
Diego Costa – Forlán

Zaragoza match selection:
Toni Doblas, Leo Franco; Contini, Lanzaro, Ander Herrera, Bertolo, Sinama Pongolle, Gabi, Braulio, Lafita, Marco Pérez, Boutahar, Jarosik, Pintér, Obradovic y Kevin.

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  • Flo

    I would love to see Filipe and Tiago playing. Kun should be given a break, considering next weeks games against Leverkusen and Sevilla.

  • Ringo Schut

    Same for me.

    Kun, I think, is best for the final 20/30 minutes, if needed.
    If he isn’t 100%, don’t use him at all, take out Assunção for Mérida or something. (Tiago/RG the only CM)

    I’d start like this:

    De Gea; Valera, Godín, Domínguez, Filipe; Camacho, Tiago; Reyes, Mérida, Simão; Costa.
    Second half: Forlán, García and Mario/Kun.

    But I’m expecting this:

    De Gea; Perea, Godín, Domínguez, Filipe/López; Assunçao, Raúl García; Reyes, Forlán, Simão; Costa.
    Second half: Tiago, Filipe? and Kun?

    We should win this game, but not take it too easily!

  • Mert

    you’re right, we SHOULD win this game.

    unfortunately, as much as i do believe this year we can live up to expectations better than we usually do, i feel this is just one of those games. where afterwards u can only sigh and say, “well, that’s atleti.” i just think it’s gonna be like the loss to Xerez at the end of last season.

    it’ll be a 1-1 or 2-2 tie, when we are obviously good enough to dominate this one

  • k14

    Dunno why you would want Assuncao out, since he kinda fixed his passing problem, he became the key player in midfield.
    Or maybe only to me 🙂

  • Ringo Schut

    I know that, but Camacho needs his matches and Paulo Assunção is needed more against Bayer.
    Still, if I’m honest, Camacho stays my favourite and I have a feeling that he’s even better when given some games in a row.

  • Independencia atletica

    it´s very very important to win today. I don´t mind how it will be, but we must win. Against Bayern or Sevilla we need to play well but today not.

  • Independencia atletica

    Only win

  • Nick Poskitt

    Aguero isn’t fit to start but Filipe makes his debut.

    Atlético XI: De Gea, Perea, Filipe, Godín, Dominguez, Assunçao, Tiago, Reyes, Simao, Diego Costa and Forlán.

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