Preview: Espanyol vs. Atletico Madrid – prediction, team news, lineups
Atlético de Madrid will look to get back on track to victory in La Liga when they continue their 2021-22 campaign at Espanyol on Sunday afternoon.
Diego Simeone’s team has accumulated seven points in their first three games of the season to occupy the fifth position in the table, while Espanyol is in 16th place, having secured two points in their three games this season.
Espanyol were relegated from La Liga at the end of 2019-20, as they racked up just 25 points from 38 games during a difficult campaign, but the club secured an immediate comeback by winning the Second Division last season.
The Whites and Blues began their 2021-22 La Liga campaign with back-to-back draws against Osasuna and Villarreal before suffering a 1-0 defeat in Mallorca before the international break.
As a result, the Catalan side are still waiting for their first goal of the season, and coach Vicente Moreno will be wary of his team’s struggles in the face of difficult games against Atlético, Sevilla, and Real Madrid in the coming weeks; It is very early in the season, but they will want to secure a victory as soon as possible.
Espanyol have only lost two of their last six league matches with Atlético and recorded a 2-1 victory when the two teams met during the 2018-19 La Liga season, while the last match between the two teams ended. in a 1-1 draw in March 2020.
Since April 2017, Atlético have not achieved an away league victory over Espanyol, who have been victorious in three of their last six games with the reigning Spanish champions.
Atlético opened their 2021-22 La Liga campaign with a 2-1 away win over Celta de Vigo on August 15 before running out 1-0 winners over Elche in their first home game of the season.
Simeone’s team was looking to score three wins in three games against Villarreal before the international break, but the champions settled for a point in a 2-2 draw, with Aissa Mandi’s own goal in the 95th minute that earned him to the locals apart. from the loot of the Wanda Metropolitano.
Atlético, which re-signed Antoine Griezmann in the final stages of the summer window, is one of the six teams that currently have seven points in La Liga, and the giants of the capital will be determined to return to the path of victory. before the group stage of the Champions League. the first game against Porto next week.
Simeone’s team enjoyed an excellent 2020-21 season, scoring 86 points from their 38 La Liga games to top the list, two points above second-place Real Madrid and seven points above third-place Barcelona.
The rojiblancos will now look to achieve back-to-back league titles and will hope that off-field problems for both Barcelona and Real Madrid will cause the two biggest clubs in Spanish football to battle it out on the field during the 2021-22 Campaign.
It is unlikely that Espanyol will be able to go to Yangel Herrera this weekend due to injury, while Adria Pedrosa continues to doubt due to a hand problem.
The local team will also be left without Sergi Gómez due to suspension, as the center-back received a late red card in the loss to Mallorca before the international break.
Raúl de Tomás is expected to be accompanied again in the last third of the field by Landry Dimata, while Gómez’s suspension will open the door for David López to appear in the middle of the defense.
As for Atlético, Joao Félix remains a doubt despite returning to training after an ankle operation, while Luis Suárez could be lost due to a knee problem, and the Uruguayan international could be saved for the first game of Champions League team.
Griezmann, as mentioned, has returned to the giants of the capital on loan from Barcelona, and it would not be a surprise to see the attacker start with Ángel Correa in the last third of the field.
Thomas Lemar could rejoin Koke and Marcos Llorente in the middle of the park, while Kieran Trippier and Yannick Carrasco are expected to play as wingers in a 3-5-2 formation this weekend.
Espanyol possible starting lineup:
Diego Lopez; Gil, Cabrera, David Lopez, Pedrosa; Embarba, Morlanes, Darder, Puado; De Tomas, Dimata
Atletico Madrid possible starting lineup:
Oblak; Savic, Gimenez, Hermoso; Trippier, Lemar, Koke, Llorente, Carrasco; Correa, Griezmann