Likely lineups, predictions, tactics, team news, and key stats
Atletico Madrid will be hoping to extend their lead at the top of the La Liga table when they face Real Sociedad on Matchday 36 of this midweek.
With only three games to go, the La Liga 2020/21 race is still far from being decided, with three teams – Atletico Madrid, Barcelona and defending champions Real Madrid all looking very much. On Wednesday night, Atletico Madrid, currently leading the pursuit squad, will have the opportunity to extend their advantage when they face Real Sociedad at Wanda Metropolitano.
Atletico Madrid have only a slim one-point advantage over second-placed Barcelona who were held to a 3-3 draw by Levante on Tuesday night. Title holders, Real Madrid, meanwhile, are just two points short of Diego Simeone’s men, who will have to bounce back on their way to victory after their scoreless standoff against Barcelona this weekend, in order to put more distance between them and their rivals.
Real Sociedad, meanwhile, are fifth in La Liga and appear well placed to qualify for the UEFA Europa League. However, with Villarreal in seventh just four points away, Imanol Alguacil’s side will need to avoid any mistakes by the end of the season, and hope to build on their 2-0 win over Elche last time around to strengthen their position. hangs in fifth place.
The reverse game, played in December last year, saw Atletico Madrid beat Real Sociedad 2-0 with second-half goals from Mario Hermoso and Marcos Llorente. Ahead of their final meeting on Wednesday night at the Wanda Metropolitano, The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at the two teams.
Team news and tactics
❝Real Sociedad is a courageous team. It will be a tough game. pic.twitter.com/rx8OyBcshD
– Atlético de Madrid (@atletienglish) May 11, 2021
Atletico Madrid will once again have to be content with the absence of Thomas Lemar, who remains sidelined with injury, while key defender Jose Maria Gimenez is also a major doubt for the game against Real Sociedad. The hosts are likely to line up in a 4-4-2 formation Wednesday night when La Real come to town.
Jan Oblak, who was the outstanding performer for Atleti in the draw against Barcelona, continues between the sticks, where he will be protected by the end line made up of Kieran Trippier, Stefan Savic, Felipe and Mario Hermoso, although the latter usually slips inside while Trippier will take a higher position, to give it a feeling of a three-way backline when Atletico is in possession.
Captain Koke will keep the fort in the middle of the park and look to dictate the pace of the game for Atletico Madrid. He is likely to receive support from Saul Niguez, whose quality on the ball could be key to unlocking Real Sociedad’s defense.
Yannick Carrasco and Marcos Llorente are expected to be the great midfielders on the right and left sides respectively, responsible for providing the push forward. While the former will look straightforward and stay wide, the latter will look to cut into the field and play closer to the attackers, leaving plenty of room for Trippier to bombard.
Luis Suarez and Angel Correa, who has been in touch lately, are expected to be the two forwards for the league leaders with Joao Felix an option on the bench, with January signing Moussa Dembele, who is a transfer target for Arsenal. .
Probable programming (4-4-2): Oblak; Trippier, Savic, Felipe, Hermoso; Llorente, Koke, Saul, Carrasco; Correa, Suarez
Real Sociedad have up to four players unavailable for their trip to the Spanish capital, Luca Sangalli, Carlos Fernandez, Aihen Munoz and Mikel Merino all missing injuries. Imanol Alguacil, as usual, is expected to put his side in 4-2-3-1 ahead of goalkeeper Alex Remiro when his side take the pitch at Wanda Metropolitano.
– Real Sociedad (@RealSociedadEN) May 11, 2021
Andoni Gorosabel and veteran Nacho Monreal are expected to be the two full-backs for La Real with the duo likely to play on the front foot and perform offensive runs whenever an opportunity presents itself. Aritz Elustondo and Robin Le Normand are expected to be the two center-backs, who will have the unenviable task of keeping the Japanese duo of Suarez and Correa quiet.
Defensive support for the midfielder will come from the duo of Martin Zubimendi and Ander Guevara, who will be the workhorse on the Real Sociedad pitch. Former Manchester City superstar David Silva will be No.10 and is looking to create openings for forwards.
Mikel Oyarzabal, who is attracting interest from Manchester United and Real Madrid, is certain to feature on the left wing, while Portu is expected to start on the right flank and look to support the only striker who should be Alexander Isak. .
Probable programming (4-2-3-1): Remiro; Gorosabel, Elustondo, Le Normand, Monreal; Guevara, Zubimendi; Portu, Silva, Oyarzabal; Isak
- Atletico Madrid are unbeaten in the last seven league games against Real Sociedad at Wanda Metropolitano (6W, 1D), keeping five clean sheets in the process.
- Real Sociedad have won three of their last four La Liga games, having failed to win any of their previous five (2D, 3L).
- Atletico Madrid have lost only once in their last five La Liga games against Real Sociedad (3W, 1D) – a 2-0 away loss in September 2019.
- Real Sociedad have not lost in their last three visits to Madrid sides in La Liga (W1 D2), having lost the previous three. They haven’t gone four undefeated away against such opposition in the competition since 1980 (W1 D3).
- Marcos Llorente has been involved in five of Atletico Madrid’s last six goals (3G, 2A) and has scored or assisted their last four goals at Wanda Metropolitano in the competition (2G, 2A).
Player to watch
– Atlético de Madrid (@atletienglish) May 11, 2021
At this crucial moment of the season, it’s time for Atletico Madrid’s most experienced player to take over and deliver. Arriving from Barcelona last summer, Suarez has had a huge impact on Los Rojiblancos acting as their main source of goals with Marcos Llorente. However, since returning from injury, the Uruguayan has looked a bit out of step, not finding the back of the net in each of his last three games.
But with the title on the line, Suarez will have to start pulling his weight to the side and make a difference after a fierce display against his former Barcelona employers this weekend. This bodes well that the 34-year-old enjoys playing against Real Sociedad given he has been involved in 10 goals in 11 league appearances against La Real (5G, 6A). A big game invites the seasoned activist.
Atletico Madrid 1-1 Real Sociedad
Atletico Madrid couldn’t get the maximum points against Barcelona last time around, meaning they only have one win in their last three games (D1 L1). In Real Sociedad, they will face a rising side, having scored three wins in their last four matches. So, it’s going to be pretty tricky for Diego Simeone’s men who have had trouble against teams in the top six this season. This is why The Hard Tackle predicts it will end in a 1-1 draw, opening the title race.