Atletico Madrid vs Athletic Bilbao predictions, H2H and match preview for this Saturday’s clash in La Liga. Read on for analysis and predicted line-ups as the hosts aim to capitalise on the postponement of El Clasico by closing the gap at the top of La Liga.
Atletico Madrid vs Athletic Bilbao Preview
This fixture produced an entertaining 3-2 Atleti win last season with Diego Godin netting a late winner. High-scoring clashes aren’t really the norm though when these two coaches meet with both men tending to favour solid defence over a more expansive approach despite the attacking quality they have at their disposal.
Atleti have plenty of options in attack but they still haven’t quite got things right in the final third this term and a record of 8 goals from 9 league games is poor by anyone’s standards. Joao Felix is carrying an injury and may not be involved here which should see Diego Costa partner Alvaro Morata at the head of a 4-4-2. Diego Simeone could also opt to give Vitolo another go, with the wideman still Atleti’s joint top league scorer with 2 goals this term.
Athletic actually have an identical record to Atleti of 8 goals scored and only 5 conceded in their 9 games in La Liga so far. Those stats don’t exactly point to a repeat of last season’s 5 goal thriller and the visitors would certainly be content to settle for a point here.
Half of Athletic’s goals have come from Raul Garcia who the home fans certainly know all about. The former Atleti man’s contribution in front of goal has been key with the Basques still a bit short on genuine goal threats elsewhere with Aritz Aduriz now into his final season and Inaki Williams still blowing hot and cold, certainly in terms of his finishing prowess.
This feels like the kind of game which could be settled by fine margins with both sides looking very solid defensively. Set-pieces may be key unless a player on either side can produce a moment of magic such as the one served up by Dani Parejo last weekend as Valencia sealed a late point at the Wanda Metropolitano.
Atletico Madrid vs Athletic Bilbao Predictions
Score Prediction: 1-0 Atleti
La Liga’s two best defences meet here with both sides averaging just 0.56 goals conceded per game. Overall Atleti have more goal threats in their side and home advantage could just swing it their way although it’d be a surprise if this was settled by more than a single goal. Athletic’s return of just 1 win from their last 10 away in La Liga also points you more in the direction of a home victory.
Atletico Madrid vs Athletic Bilbao H2H
- Last 6 competitive meetings: 4 Atleti Wins, 1 Athletic Win, 1 Draw.
- Athletic won the most recent meeting, 2-0 at San Mames in March.
- Atleti had won all of the previous 4 clashes though.
- They’ve won their last 4 home games against the Basques in La Liga.
Predicted Line Ups
Atletico Madrid Team:
Oblak – Trippier, Felipe, Hermoso, Lodi – Koke, Saul, Thomas, Vitolo – Morata, Costa (4-4-2)
Athletic Club Team:
Simon – Yuri, Yeray, Martinez, Capa – Garcia, Benat – Muniain, Garcia, De Marcos – Williams (4-2-3-1)