UCL Match Preview: RB Salzburg vs Atletico Madrid Predictions

RB Salzburg vs Atletico Madrid predictions

RB Salzburg vs Atletico Madrid predictions and match preview for Wednesday’s game in the UEFA Champions League. Read on for the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as these sides battle it out for a place in the knockout stage.

  • DATE: Wednesday 9th December 2020
  • KICK-OFF: 21:00 (local time)
  • VENUE: Red Bull Arena
  • COMPETITION: UEFA Champions League (Group Stage)

RB Salzburg vs Atletico Madrid Preview

RB Salzburg vs Atletico Madrid preview
RB Salzburg stadium via Arne Museler, CC BY-SA 3.0

Atletico Madrid are flying in LaLiga but they again head into the final Champions League group game needing a result to secure qualification for the knockout stage. This isn’t an easy fixture either, away to a RB Salzburg side that have some dangerous players and are more than capable of making things tricky for Diego Simeone’s side, as they did in the reverse fixture.

This is effectively a knockout or play-off game of sorts. Bayern Munich have already comfortably won this group and either Atleti or Salzburg will take 2nd. The equation is quite simple. Atleti will be through with a draw but lose and they will be out of this season’s UEFA Champions League and it’ll be the Austrians who progress.

Atletico Madrid fans, while encouraged by how this season is shaping up, will be frustrated that their team has spurned several opportunities to push clear of Salzburg and seal qualification already. They could only draw both games against bottom side Lokomotiv Moscow. Even last week’s home game against what was largely a back-up Bayern XI should probably have been won but Thomas Muller’s late penalty leaves Atleti with what could be a nerve-jangling night in Austria.

RB Salzburg might not be quite as competitive as they were last season when they could rely on the immense talents of Erling Haaland. However they still have some very exciting young players that have contributed to them scoring 10 goals in this group, twice the number Atleti have managed.

Their top scorer is 22 year old Mergim Berisha who has fired in 4 goals, including a brace in the 3-1 win in Moscow last week which kept Salzburg’s hopes alive. They also have the precocious talent of 20 year old Hungarian Dominik Szoboszlai who is attracting interest from some of Europe’s biggest clubs.

Head to Head

  • A Joao Felix brace helped Atleti come from behind to beat Salzburg 3-2 in the reverse fixture.
  • The sides hadn’t previously met.

Team News

Salzburg are missing Youba Diarra, Antoine Bernede and Ousmane Diakite to injury.

With Renan Lodi and Yannick Carrasco out, Diego Simeone has a dilemma in terms of how to line up on the left flank and may go with Vitolo at wing-back again. Koke and Jose Gimenez will return following weekend rests.

Predicted Salzburg Starting Lineup:

Stankovic – Ulmer, Wober, Ramalho, Kristensen – Szoboszlai, Junuzovic, Camara, Mwepu – Koita, Berisha (4-4-2)

Predicted Atleti Starting Lineup:

Oblak – Hermoso, Gimenez, Savic – Vitolo, Saul, Koke, Llorente, Trippier – Suarez, Felix (3-5-2)

RB Salzburg vs Atletico Madrid Predictions

Score Prediction: RB Salzburg 1-1 Atletico Madrid

This is a real banana skin game for Atletico Madrid and it won’t be easy. Salzburg showed in the reverse fixture that they have the tools to break them down but the Spanish side are still very tough to beat and you’d back them to get the draw they need to progress.

UEFA Champions League Betting Tips (18+)

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Read our latest Champions League & Europa League match previews.

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About Mark Sochon 2075 Articles
Mark is a freelance writer based in Madrid. He has been writing about Spanish football since 2014 and regularly attends and covers matches across Spain. His work has also been published by various newspapers and websites including These Football Times, World Soccer and Guardian Sport. Available for freelance work: marksochon (at) hotmail.co.uk