2021-22 UEFA Champions League Group Stage: Week Three – Atletico Madrid vs Liverpool

Atletico Madrid welcome Liverpool to Metropolitano Stadium, Madrid in a blockbuster Group B clash in 2021-22 UEFA Champions League.

Victory would see Atletico leapfrog Liverpool into top spot of Group B, whilst Liverpool know that a draw at minimum would see them stay top.

 

Team News

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Atletico could welcome Matheus Cunha back from a thigh injury which forced him to miss their last two matches in all competitions.

Stefan Savic misses out through suspension as he serves the third of a four match ban after being sent off in March’s Round of 16 exit against eventual champions – Chelsea.

Liverpool will welcome Alisson and Fabinho back after the Brazilian pair opted to skip Saturday’s away win at Watford, instead flying to Spain where they will re-join the squad after featuring for Brazil during the recent international break.

Curtis Jones (groin) is a doubt but Thiago Alcantara (calf) and Harvey Elliott (ankle) remain absent.

 

Stat Attack

  • Atletico Madrid are unbeaten in four Champions League meetings against Liverpool (W2, D2).
  • Liverpool are winless in three away trips to Atletico Madrid (D1, L2), with both defeats finishing in 1-0 results.
  • Atletico has kept four clean sheets in five home matches across all competitions this season.
  • Three of Liverpool’s eight goals in their opening two group matches have been scored by Mohamed Salah, who is their only player who has scored in both group games so far this season.
  • This is Atletico Madrid’s first match ever to be refereed by Daniel Siebert, although Liverpool won their only previous match refereed by the German – beating Red Star Belgrade 4-0 at home in October 2018.

 

Prediction

Having had extra days to prepare for this match due to their La Liga clash being postponed due to international duty, Atletico Madrid will be difficult to predict because they would of have had over two rests rest so will be fresh but this is a difficult match for them to resume their season on.

I however do expect them to deviate from their usual formation given that Liverpool are an attack-minded opposition, meaning that a 4-3-3 or 4-5-1 formation could be utilised in order to try and limit attacks whilst their stubborn defence could certainly cause their own issues if play compactly.

Liverpool meanwhile come into this match in high form after delivering a ruthless yet controlled away demolition of Watford, complete with high-tempo pressing which is surely going to be of concern for Atletico who though should given the Reds’ defence more of a game than they got on Saturday.

This though will be an incredibly tough match for both teams but if Liverpool play like they did on Saturday despite facing difficult opposition and score first whilst Atletico try to settle into their first match in over two weeks, I wouldn’t be surprised if they win this if not snatch a draw.

Prediction: Atletico Madrid 1-1 Liverpool

Result: Atletico Madrid 2-3 Liverpool 

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