Atletico & Real will excite the watching world but don't bet on too many goals
The Madrid derby is significant in any season, but this one takes on new importance as the sides battle to keep pace with Barcelona.
Santiago Solari's men faced Barcelona in a Copa del Rey Clasico in midweek, drawing 1-1, and have a Champions League trip to Ajax on Wednesday evening. Atletico's preparation for the match was much more straightforward, as they have had a week to get ready and no European commitments next week.
Atletico is the only remaining side with an unbeaten record at home in LaLiga, but that record will come under a stern examination against city rivals and European Champions Real Madrid. Can Real become the first visiting side to win at Wanda Metropolitano in LaLiga this season? They need to if they are to close the gap on Barcelona, who lead them by eight points in the standings. They can go a point above Atletico if they win.
Facts & men to watch
- Six of the last seven head to head clashes in LaLiga have ended with under 2.5 total goals.
- The last four LaLiga clashes have ended in draws.
- Antoine Griezmann has ten goals and six assists this season for Atletico in LaLiga.
- Karim Benzema is red-hot with six goals and an assist in his last six outings for Real.
Marcos Llorente faces three weeks out after limping off at Camp Nou in Real's draw at Barcelona in Copa Del Rey. Atletico has Diego Godin, Koke and Saul Niguez all pushing for returns from injury. Diego Costa and defender Stefan Savic are injured.
With so little to separate the sides, we are inclined to back the draw priced at the attractive price of 3.00, although the safer money is on under 2.5 goals priced at 1.74. Interestingly, the 1-1 scoreline is priced at 5.00.
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