Tuesday, September 21

A derby to decide the fate of La Liga

Although the first third of La Liga has not yet been consumed and Zidane comes from two victories as unpredictable as they are balsamic, the Madrid face before Athletic More than a winter derby, it is another final so as not to stray further in the classification of its neighbor from the capital (there are already six points with one more game), launched with 26 points out of 30 possible and seven consecutive victories, one step away from leaving La Liga almost sentenced.

Zidane’s speech never changes and he continues to take on the storms as they arrive, but after qualifying for the knockout stages of the Champions League and accumulating two games without conceding goals, he does so with a more comfortable tone. «There are only endings here, always», said the Frenchman.

The truth is that, for the third time this week, Madrid are facing a fundamental game to keep their expectations alive in La Liga, after having accumulated a lot of deficits with regrettable performances.

Zidane’s team is one defeat away from reaching the nine points down, the most that a league champion has cut in history, with a game more than an Atlético that would have an unbeatable panorama, with Barça 12 points, to assault the title, only at the expense of a rojiblanco sinking so that there is another champion . Not even the mythical spirit of the White comebacks seems capable of helping to undertake, in this season full of excuses based on the pandemic, a historical feat of that magnitude.

Fede Valverde returns

Thus, a tie would not be a bad business for both, especially for a Zidane who continues with Hazard out. Will come back Carvajal the white eleven, after being on the bench against Borussia, and the Uruguayan Faith valverde He has made it to the call, after more than 30 days absent. If they win, Madrid would return emotion to a League in which the top favorites are far from their best.

Simeone’s team also resolved its European final in Salzburg to go to the Champions League and against Madrid it arrives with its bet of three centrals and Carrasco in the lane position very well established, with good play and good results.

The evolution towards a game with more offensive intent, supported by the quality of the Joao Felix and the ability to resolve Luis Suarez, he is finding support for the rojiblancos in his historic defensive reliability. He has two goals against in ten games in a domestic competition in which the most pressing objective of Simeone’s is to avoid a favoritism with which he already lives. «He’s the favorite, sure. Atlético is the first, it is what they are showing », Zidane assumed without hesitation.

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What if the great form of Atlético is going to do is to put that tendency of giving its best version to the test in the most important games that Madrid has taken in recent times, even if they have arrived between unjustifiable slips. A colder reading leads one to think that Zidane’s project has nothing to spare against any rival and only at maximum performance does he achieve results worthy of his aspirations.

Probable lineups:

Real Madrid: Courtois; Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Mendy; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Lucas Vázquez, Benzema, Asensio or Vinicius. Technical: Zinedine Zidane. Hazard, Mariano, Jovic and Odegaard are low.

Atlético de Madrid: Oblak; Trippier, Savic, Felipe, Hermoso, Carrasco; Llorente, Herrera or Saúl, Koke; Joao Félix, Luis Suárez. Technical: Diego Simeone. Giménez and Diego Costa are out.

Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (Valencian).

Stadium: Alfredo Di Stéfano. 9:00 p.m. (Movistar LaLiga).


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