UCL Match Preview: Real Madrid vs Atalanta Predictions

Real Madrid vs Atalanta

Real Madrid vs Atalanta predictions and match preview for Tuesday’s game in the UEFA Champions League. Read on for the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as Los Blancos target a place in the last eight.

  • DATE: Tuesday 16th March 2021
  • KICK-OFF: 21:00 (local time)
  • VENUE: Alfredo di Stefano
  • COMPETITION: UEFA Champions League Last 16, 2nd Leg
  • Madrid lead 1-0 on aggregate.

Real Madrid vs Atalanta Preview


Real Madrid's Alfredo Di Stefano Stadium
Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano via Brgesto, CC BY-SA 3.0

Spanish hopes of a LaLiga representative in the Champions League Quarter-Finals this year, largely lie on the shoulders of Real Madrid who take a 1-0 lead into the 2nd Leg of their clash with Atalanta. Zinedine Zidane’s side will be expected to finish the job on Tuesday night at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano.

The 1st Leg had the potential to really go wrong for Madrid. They travelled to Bergamo missing a host of key players and with a bench largely consisting of B team and youth players. However an early red card for Atalanta’s Remo Freuler set the tone for the night as the Italian side abandoned their usual attacking approach and sat deep in a bid to keep themselves in the tie heading into the 2nd Leg. Real Madrid struggled to create chances but ultimately found the breakthrough as Ferland Mendy fired in from range in the 86th minute.

Los Blancos will have a stronger XI out this week as they look to finish the job. Most notably Karim Benzema and Sergio Ramos are available again. The former has been instrumental in keeping their slim title hopes alive in the weeks since the 1st Leg with Benzema netting crucial late goals in the Madrid derby and again against Elche at the weekend where he struck a marvellous winner to make it four games in a row where Real Madrid have scored decisive goals after the 85th minute.

This will be a different kind of game to the 1st Leg which was largely conditioned by that early sending off. Atalanta will certainly back themselves to score in Madrid. They average 2.33 goals per game this season in Serie A where they are currently 4th. They will also take confidence from having won all of their away games in the UCL group stage including an impressive 2-0 win at Anfield against Liverpool.

Their chances of getting a real foothold in the match are boosted by the absence of Casemiro, who has been absolutely key for Los Blancos this season, both in terms of protecting the defence and scoring and creating goals.

Head to Head

  • Real Madrid won the 1st Leg 1-0 in Bergamo.
  • The clubs hadn’t previously met.

Team News

Casemiro is suspended for Madrid while Eden Hazard is injured again and joins Dani Carvajal on the sidelines.

Remo Freueler is banned following his red card in the 1st Leg. Hans Hateboer is also out injured for the visitors.

Predicted Real Madrid Starting Lineup:

Courtois – Mendy, Ramos, Varane, Carvajal – Kroos, Valverde, Modric – Isco – Benzema, Asensio (4-3-1-2)

Predicted Atalanta Starting Lineup:

Gollini – Palomino, Romero, Toloi – Gosens, Pessina, Roon, Maehle – Ilcic – Zapata, Muriel (3-4-1-2)


Real Madrid vs Atalanta Predictions


Score Prediction: Real Madrid 2-1 Atalanta (Real Madrid win 3-1 on aggregate)

This tie is not over and if Real Madrid approach it with even the slightest hint that it is, they could be in for a nasty shock. Atalanta are an exciting side but overall Madrid’s considerable European experience and pedigree on these kinds of nights should be telling and they ought to finish the job.

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Spanish football writer
About Mark Sochon 1699 Articles
Mark is a freelance writer based in Madrid, writing mostly about Spanish football. His work has been published by the likes of Guardian Sport & World Soccer. Contact: marksochon (at) hotmail.co.uk