Atletico Madrid vs Athletic Club predictions and match preview for Thursday’s Supercopa fixture. Read on for expert analysis, the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as the second Semi-Final takes place.
|Date||Thursday 13th January 2022|
|Kick-Off||20:00 (Spanish time)|
|Stadium||King Fahd International Stadium|
Atletico Madrid vs Athletic Club Preview
The second Supercopa Semi-Final takes place on Thursday. It won’t carry quite the same hype as the previous day’s Clasico but it does feature the holders of this competition as Athletic Club begin the defence of the crown they won in Seville last season against Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid.
It’ll be interesting to see how Atleti approach this game. More dropped points at the weekend in LaLiga in the shape of a 2-2 draw against Villarreal means they are well off the pace in LaLiga and they certainly aren’t playing like potential Champions League winners. That leaves the domestic cups as the only realistic shots Atleti have at silverware this term and Diego Simeone has already signalled his desire to take them very seriously by naming a very strong side in the 3rd Round of the Copa del Rey against Rayo Majadahonda last week.
Atleti’s problems remain primarily in defence. Whether it’s a back three or back four, Atletico Madrid don’t convince and are some way short of the standards they set last season and have indeed consistently reached over the course of what is now a decade under Cholo’s leadership. The departure of Kieran Trippier to Newcastle also leaves something of a void at right-back or right wing-back which looks set to be filled by Marcos Llorente, although it does feel like a waste of the Spain international’s talents which were so brilliantly evident throughout 2020/21 in an attack-minded midfield role.
Athletic Club will come into this game believing they can progress into the Final. It was success in this competition last January which provided an excellent launchpad for Marcelino’s reign in Bilbao. At the time it looked like it might be a perfect match, but it has been a relatively bumpy twelve months since for the former Valencia boss.
Last season would ultimately be remembered as much for two Copa del Rey Final defeats as it would for their Supercopa triumph and the Basque giants are currently 9th in LaLiga halfway through the 2021/22 campaign. Marcelino will point to the emergence and development of one or two younger players as proof that things are looking more positive and to his credit he has also got the best out of a few older players such as Oscar De Marcos who has impressed at right-back in recent weeks.
Head to Head
- Last 6 Competitive Meetings: 2 Atletico Madrid Wins, 2 Athletic Club Wins, 2 Draws.
- The sides drew 0-0 at the Wanda Metropolitano earlier this season.
- Atleti had won their previous 5 home games against Athletic but they’ve taken just 1 point from their last 3 trips to Bilbao in LaLiga.
- The clubs have never met in the Supercopa but Athletic did beat Atleti 7-5 on aggregate in the 1950 Copa Eva Duarte which saw the defending league and cup winners face off.
Antoine Griezmann is definitely out for Atleti due to injury. Jose Maria Gimenez and Luis Suarez are available again following league bans.
Stefan Savic is a doubt. Athletic have a number of fitness concerns right now with Unai Vencedor, Asier Villalibre and Ander Capa doubtful although only Vencedor would be in line to start if fit.
Atletico Madrid vs Athletic Club Predictions
Score Prediction: Atletico Madrid 1-1 Athletic Club (Atleti to Win on Penalties)
This is a tough one to call. Atletico Madrid will be the favourites but they simply don’t convince defensively at the moment and Athletic ought to get chances in this game. Whether they are clinical enough to win it outright is more doubtful and it’d be no surprise if this one went the distance.
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