Atl. Madrid vs. Liverpool

EUROPE: Champions League

Date: 19-10-21

Time: 8:00 PM

Venue: Wanda Metropolitano (Madrid)

Spanish champions Atlético Madrid return from the international break and head straight into UEFA Champions League (UCL) action, having had their La Liga game postponed at the weekend. Despite that subsequent two-week break, Atlético will be full of confidence, having dispatched Barcelona and AC Milan in their two games leading into the international hiatus.

If there is a weakness in Diego Simeone’s Atlético machine, it’s going winless in their four previous home UCL fixtures (D3, L1 – including one neutral venue), their joint-longest run in the competition. Respite may ironically come in the form of hosting European juggernauts Liverpool, having knocked them out in the Round of 16 in the 2019/20 edition, albeit via second-leg extra time, after securing a 1-0 home victory in the first leg.

Liverpool at least had a tune-up game before their European duties resumed, preserving their unbeaten start to the season with a cracking 5-0 win at Watford. After a perfect start to UCL Group B, the ‘Reds’ travel having last experienced an away UCL group stage defeat over two years ago, scoring 18 goals and conceding just three in the six away fixtures since (W5, D1).

Spain hasn’t been Liverpool’s favourite destination though, losing six of their previous seven away European fixtures on Spanish soil (D1), including two defeats to Atlético! In the UCL, these two teams are deadlocked at two draws and a win apiece in four matches (in 90 minutes), although Liverpool will have happy memories of the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium, having won their last UCL title here in 2018/19.

Players to watch: Current Atlético striker and former Liverpool player Luis Suárez scored (and celebrated) against his former employees in the 2018/19 UCL semi-finals, while Mohamed Salah has found the net in five consecutive away UCL matches for the ‘Reds’.

Recent Form

Atl. Madrid’s form in last 5 matches: WWLWD.

Liverpool’s form in last 5 matches: WDWDW.

PREDICTION: BTTS