Match preview: Atlético vs. Sevilla

Los Rojiblancos shift their focus back to La Liga in crucial tie against bitter foes

Godín steps in the way of a Negredo blast  (colchonero.com)

Godín steps in the way of a Negredo blast
(colchonero.com)

Atlético host progressively-more-bitter rivals Sevilla at the Vicente Calderón on Sunday at 18:00 CET, just days after a mediocre showing in midweek Europa League action.

Up for grabs are three crucial points in a match that can be deemed a ‘six-pointer’ given the likely implications the result will have in determining who ends up with a ticket to Champions League play at the end of the season.

Los Rojiblancos will want to improve on the form they displayed in France Thursday evening, a night in which nothing was clicking for Atleti except for the wobbly knees of a nervous Perea.

But, it could’ve been worse, as super-subs Salvio and Juanfran hooked up late for the equaliser, securing a critical away point in the European competition against a solid Rennes side.

Gregorio Manzano’s men must immediately shift their focus back to La Liga, where they currently sit in eighth place, just outside the European spots for next year.

Manzano, who coached Sevilla to a fifth place finish last year, said in Saturday’s pre-game press conference, “We’re playing for the most important three points we have disputed until now.”

He continued: “We hope to stay on the same line as the last games at home.”

Vice-captain Alvaro Dominguez echoed his manager’s words.

“On Sunday there’s a lot to play for,” he said.

“The team is aware of this and goes into the match against Sevilla treating it like a final because we want to be up there, and Sevilla have the same goals as us.”

Colombian defender Luis Amaranto Perea, who took a lot of heat following a dreadful performance at right back on Thursday less than a week after committing a series of miscues in the bloodbath at the Camp Nou, was left off the match selection.

The decision to leave Perea out of the squad feels more like a calling out of the defender by his coach, rather than a rotational break.

Let’s hope the rest serves Amaranto both physically and mentally, as he is currently the only backup to Sílvio. The Portuguese has been dealing with a groin injury throughout the first couple of weeks of the campaign, but returns to the squad for this clash.

It can be deduced from Manzano’s decision to leave Perea out that the training staff is confident about Sílvio’s fitness, however, a report by AS suggests surgery is being considered which would keep the 24-year-old out for approximately a month and a half.

The most sensible approach would be to try to put off an operation until January, when a replacement can be signed while Sílvio recovers.

Pizzi, Pulido, Koke, Assunçao and Asenjo will join Perea in the stands, while Antonio López and Joel return to the match selection.

Marcelino García Toral’s men were able to shut down Valencia last week at the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, handing los Che their first loss of the season.

Despite being left down to nine men at one point following the dismissals of Piotr Trochowski and then Julien Escudé, Sevilla remain undefeated following their 1-0 triumph.

Los Nervionenses had luck on their side, as Éver Banega failed to convert a penalty in the game.

Reports earlier in the week suggested lethal striker Alvaro Negredo was a doubt for the trip to Madrid, but the Spain international traveled with his team-mates and will be a game-time decision.

Atlético match selection:
Goalkeepers: Joel, Courtois
Defenders: Diego Godín, Antonio López, Filipe Luis, Sílvio, Álvaro Domínguez, Miranda
Midfielders: Mario Suárez, Tiago, Salvio, Reyes, Arda, Gabi, Juanfran, Diego
Forwards: Adrián, Falcao

Sevilla match selection:
Goalkeepers: Palop, Javi Varas
Defenders: Fazio, Fernando Navarro, Cáceres, Alexis, Spahic, Luna, Coke
Midfielders: Jesús Navas, Medel, Perotti, Rakitic, Campaña, Armenteros, Tom de Mul
Forwards: Negredo, Kanouté, Manu del Moral

Referee: Alberto Undiano Mallenco

Don’t forget to submit your score over at our Prediction League section!


  • 92

    This match is gonna be crucial if we want to qualify for CL, Sevilla is 3rd, therefore winning tomorrow would be a huge step in the quest for a CL berth, the match is gonna be tough, and in order to win, we must play intelligent and not make mistakes.

    My preferred line-up would be:

    Courtois

    Salvio Miranda Dominguez Filipe Luis

    Mario Suarez

    Gabi

    Diego

    Reyes Turan

    Falcao

  • starvs

    Very important game, must win some games like this to get back to CL. Can’t remember the last time Atleti really impressed against a top opponent, now is a good a time as ever.

  • DJ_ZA

    yeah Starvs …… it’s kinda been different squad, same Atleti topsy turvy results. I’m not sure what we’ll get tomorrow, but am always optimistic.

    ‘nothing was clicking for Atleti except for the wobbly knees of a nervous Perea’ … whahahaha – love that analogy Martin (much better effort than that lame Kun / Falcao comparison). Just hope our defence recover their confidence.
    Not great news about potential Silvio surgery 🙁 …… although that does start me on a DF wishlist …… maybe Aly Cissokho or Franck Toubanou (perhaps too expensive?). Then maybe that Spanish dude who plays for Marseille (forget his name – is he still injured?), or a really intimidating Serbian or Czech (miss Ujfa), or a giant German or Austrian (Bremen’s Prodl?) or oversized Scandanavian or Belgian (does Courtois have any skilled brothers I don’t know about?? lol). But this is Atleti ….so we’d get a talented South American with no EU passport and have to get rid of Miranda! …. Which reminds me …. what ever happened to Leandro Cabrera? Is he still out on loan? Is he any good?
    Which defenders would be on your shopping list??????

    Apologies for my drivel …. I have trouble remaining serious ( jejejejeje) but would really like to know who you’d choose to replace the ageing Perea / injured Silvio / out-of-form Godin.(preferably somebody we could afford + who would actually move to Atleti)

  • k14

    I loved how maxi Pereira played for uruguay, was really impressive in cupa america.

  • k14

    but both him and silivio are good to be subs

  • k14

    too good*

  • leiks

    Maxi Pereira, Jorge Fucile,Gökhan Gönul, Hakan Balta, Canella, Miguel Torres and remember we bought Hugo Mallo fromm Celta.

  • Davide

    Winning this game will probably put us back on track, and most of all, it will make the players forget the Barcelona game.

    3-1 to ATM

    92//

    Love your line-up! You have 12 players on the field! 🙂

  • Davide

    92//

    Sorry mate, i read it too quickly. You wrote the full name of Mario. First it looked like Mario and Suarez were two seperate players.

  • Matthijs

    @ DJ_ZA

    I think you mean Cesar Azipilicueta?

  • fancyfartpants

    arda will score his first goal..2-1 atletico wins, winning goal arda.. first 0-1 for sevilla, then 1-1 falcao, then arda 2-1

  • DJ_ZA

    Yes, thanks Matthijs.

  • 92

    DJ_ZA, Leandro Cabrera is loan at Numancia, he played like 2 or 3 games his first year at Atleti, and I don’t remember him, so I can’t tell exactly how good he is.
    Prodl would be a great addition, he is tall and strong just like Konan, I mean Ujfa!, (I sure miss him too), or why don’t we just use Pulido as RB?. What if he turns out into a reliable RB?, that would be great. You said Atleti gets South American players, but I don’t think there are good enough players in the Americas, I can only think of Sean Franklin,he is a reliable player, but he isn’t that tall or strong. Mauricio Isla, he is a great utility player, it would be great to have him, I was also thinking of Adriano from Barcelona, he plays on both sides, he can defend and attack, and he isn’t getting enough action at Barca, getting him on loan would be great, that way we wouldn’t invest a ton of money.

    And I agree, we need to find someone who can replace Perea and Godin, but whom?, Godin was a wall with Villarreal, he had very good seasons with them, but now he is in bad shape and slow, if only he could find his best form, we wouldn’t have defensive problems, but that’s not case.
    In my CBs lists are Mamadou Sakho, Subotic, Ranocchia Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Lisandro Lopez (Arsenal de Sarandi), Omar Gonzalez, and some others.

  • DJ_ZA

    Thanks for the Leandro Cabrera update 92.

    Nice CB’s …you included the oversized Belgians, intimidating Serbian, a flashy Frenchie (sorry don’t know Omar Gonzalez). I’d scratch the Italian though – he isn’t having the best time at Inter at the moment.
    So if it it were transfer time, sadly I’m not convinced any of them would choose a move to Atleti…..so we’d end up with your final choice … the talented South American (who probably doesn’t have an EU passport.) Lol!!!

  • Lubo

    First thing. Godín was really solid today.
    Second, if we have to buy another central defender my vote goes for Nicolas Otamendi from Porto. Yes, he’s not really tall (I don’t think we need tall players in Spain), but he’s young and his potential is sky high, however he’s solid also right now. The only problem and also the biggest one is his Argentinian passport.
    And I’m for Gonul on RB. At least Arda would have it easier to settle down in Madrid.

  • 92

    DJ_ZA, Omar Gonzalez plays from LA Galaxy, I compare him to Onyewu, and I agree sadly none of them would move to Atleti including Lisandro Lopez, how about you?, who are your CBs candidates?.: ).

    Lubo, yes Godin was solid today but Sevilla, was playing counterattack, and they didn’t attack us that match, that’s why Godin was solid, I just wish he finds his best form, but that is gonna take time, and we don’t have time to improvise in defense, we need to win games and improve in defense, no offense to Godin whatsoever.

  • k14

    I don’t think we need a CB, but we definitely need a RB.
    Perea, Godin, Alvaro D., and miranda are more than enough for CB positions.