Wednesday 1 Feb

Atl. Madrid vs Barcelona Match Preview

01 Feb 2017 Stuart S. SPAIN: Copa del Rey
SPAIN: Copa del Rey

Atletico Madrid

  • W
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • D

vs

Kick-off
20:00 GMT
01 February 2017

FC Barcelona

  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • D

Kick-off
20:00 GMT 01 February 2017

The Atletico Madrid vs Barcelona match will be played on Wednesday, February 1st, 2017 at Estadio Vicente Calderon in Madrid.

This is the first leg of the 2017 Copa Del Rey semi-final. The second leg takes place on February 7th, 2017 at Camp Nou, Barcelona. The winners of this tie meet Alaves or Celta Vigo in the final.

STATS

  • Barcelona has been winning HT/FT in their last 3 Copa Del Rey matches.
  • Atletico Madrid has conceded 16 goals in La Liga this season. Only Villarreal with 14 has conceded fewer.
  • Messi, Suarez and Neymar have scored 36 goals in La Liga. Atletico Madrid has scored 34.
  • Atletico Madrid has conceded 2 goals in 3 of their last 6 games.
  • Atletico Madrid has won 11 of their 15 home matches this season.

HEAD TO HEAD

The two sides met at Camp Nou, Barcelona on September 21st, 2016 when the score ended 1-1. Ivan Rakitic gave Barcelona the lead before Angel Correa equalised in the second half.

Head to head matches: Atletico Madrid - FC Barcelona

21.09.2016 LaLi FC Barcelona Atletico Madrid 1:1

Barcelona has won 4 of the last 6 meetings between the two sides but hasn’t won the last 2. Atletico has won 2 of the last 6 in the Vicente Calderon (D1, L3).

ATLETICO MADRID NEWS

At the start of the season, Atletico Madrid were expected to be one of the challengers for the title but that outcome seems highly unlikely now. Trailing their city neighbours Real, by 10 points, Atleti are also in a dogfight for the final Champions League place with Real Sociedad and Villarreal refusing to concede ground to Diego Simeone’s men.

Unusually for Simeone’s side, they have conceded a higher than usual number of goals in recent games. Athletic Bilbao and Eibar both scored twice while Las Palmas grabbed 3 in the Vicente Calderon in the last round of the Copa Del Rey. Despite losing that leg 2-3, Atletico progressed thanks to a 2-0 win in Mallorca.

That was Atleti’s last defeat in the last 10 games, drawing 3 and winning 6 in that spell. The concern for Diego Simeone is that the 3 draws have come in the last 3 games, with a bright spot being the goalless draw at Alaves on Saturday, even if Atletico were fortunate to score zero.

Winning the Copa Del Rey would salvage the domestic season but they are also focussed on the last 8 of the Champions League with Bayer Leverkusen their opponents in the Round of 16.

Latest matches: Atletico Madrid

28.01.2017 LaLi CD Alaves Atletico Madrid 0:0 D
25.01.2017 Copa SD Eibar Atletico Madrid 2:2 D
22.01.2017 LaLi Athletic Bilbao Atletico Madrid 2:2 D
19.01.2017 Copa Atletico Madrid SD Eibar 3:0 W
14.01.2017 LaLi Atletico Madrid Betis Sevilla 1:0 W

BARCELONA NEWS

A controversial draw at Real Betis was hardly ideal preparation for this cup-tie but it provides Luis Enrique with the perfect motivation for this cup-tie.

Luis Suarez’s late disallowed goal when the ball had clearly crossed the line was the latest incident where refereeing decisions have denied the Blaugrana 3 points. Had this, and for example, Villarreal been wins, they would be level on points with Real Madrid.

A siege mentality is brewing in Catalunya which can’t be good for Real Madrid, who are wobbling at the moment. Dismissing Barca is a national pastime in Spain but the past tells us they will be strong in the second half of the season.

Last season, Atletico did a number on Barca twice at the Vicente Calderon; superior defence against the Blaugrana’s fabled attack but this is third time lucky. Atletico are vulnerable at the moment and in Messi, Suarez and Neymar, Barcelona have the tools to unpick the locks.

Latest matches: FC Barcelona

29.01.2017 LaLi Betis Sevilla FC Barcelona 1:1 D
26.01.2017 Copa FC Barcelona Real Sociedad 5:2 W
22.01.2017 LaLi SD Eibar FC Barcelona 0:4 W
19.01.2017 Copa Real Sociedad FC Barcelona 0:1 W
14.01.2017 LaLi FC Barcelona Las Palmas UD 5:0 W

SUMMING UP!

Dismissing Atletico’s chances, especially at home, is foolhardy but recent form suggests that an away win or draw is the most likely outcome. Then again nobody gave them much chance in last season’s Champions League semi-final and Atletico outfoxed Barca in the second leg.

Simeone loves these tactical battles and knows that his side’s recent form goes out of the window in a big match such as this.

Even so, it’s hard to see anything other than Barcelona avoiding defeat. Whether they have enough edge to take the win is another matter.

About the author - Stuart S.

An English freelance sports writer, Stuart has written the Arsenal blog A Cultured Left Foot since 2006, as well as numerous betting previews and articles.

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