Fourth plays third as Atletico Madrid welcome an injury-hit Sevilla to the Vicente Calderon in the Spanish La Liga on Sunday afternoon, in a game that could have huge ramifications on the title race this season. Atleti trail their opponents in the table but are in fine home form which could see them closing the deficit on Sevilla, all but ending the visitors’ hopes of a league crown.
Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid side are currently fourth in the Spanish La Liga table with 52 points from 27 games this season, coming off the back of four wins and a draw from their last half a dozen outings. The Rojiblancos have been formidable on home soil too, boasting five wins from their last six at the Vicente Calderon, and will fancy their chances of victory over Sevilla given the visitors’ recent mini-slump.
As for the away side, Sevilla are one place and five points ahead of Atleti in the division, having won four and drawn two of their last six games – five points adrift of leaders Real Madrid. The visitors have been inconsistent on the road, however, which could prove costly, coupled with their injury woes. Sevilla have lost two and drawn one of their last five on the road, and have gone three without a win home and away. Sevilla also haven’t beaten Atletico Madrid away since 2008 so their head-to-head record could also go against them.
Atletico Madrid have three players absent for the meeting with Sevilla. Midfielder Tiago is out of action, as is midfielder Augusto Fernández who has an ACL injury. Striker Kevin Gameiro has been ruled out with an abdominal strain.
Sevilla have a lot of players out of action which is sure to go against them. Midfielders Walter Montoya and Daniel Carriço are both out, as are forwards Luciano Vietto and Carlos Fernández. Defender Benoît Trémoulinas has a meniscus injury, midfielders Michael Krohn-Dehli and Joaquin Correa have a fractured kneecap and knee problem respectively. Defenders Adil Rami and Nicolás Pareja have a knee injury and groin injury respectively.
With Atletico Madrid so strong on home soil, while Sevilla have looked human on the road, while enduring a three-game winless run in all competitions ahead of this weekend’s clash, the hosts could well come away with all three points – potentially leading to Sevilla being eight points adrift in the title race after the weekend.