Atlético Madrid welcome Real Sociedad in their final game of the La Liga 2019-20 campaign at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium. Los Colchoneros are already guaranteed a top-four finish but need at least a draw against their next opponents to secure a third-placed finish as Sevilla, currently in the fourth place, can overtake them if they fail to secure a point from the game.
Real Sociedad, on the other hand, are locked in a four-way battle for the sixth position in league standings that would see them compete in the Europa League for the first time since the 2017-18 season.
The hosts have not lost a game since the La Liga restart, managing seven wins and three draws in the 10 games in that period. La Real have been a bit inconsistent in their previous 10 games, with five losses, three draws and just two wins, in part due to an injury crisis at the club.
Both the clubs will be looking to finish their season on a positive note, so here we take a look at what to expect from this clash between the two clubs with European football ambitions next season.
Atlético Madrid vs Real Sociedad Head-to-Head
The two clubs have faced each other 135 times in the Spanish top-flight, in which Atlético boast a 50% win ratio. Real Sociedad have 41 wins, while 27 games have ended in a stalemate.
Of their previous 20 meetings, all but one have produced conclusive results, with 13 of those ending in the favour of the hosts.
In their latest meeting, La Real inflicted a 2-0 loss over Atlético Madrid in the reverse fixture earlier this season. They have not completed a league double over their opponents since the 2002-03 campaign and can achieve this feat on Sunday night, avenging their humiliation from last season when Diego Simeone's men completed the double with a 4-0 aggregate score.
Atlético Madrid: WWDWDW
Real Sociedad: DWLDWL
Atlético Madrid vs Real Sociedad Team News
Diego Simeone will be without midfielder Saul Niguez in the final game of the season, as he picked up his 10th yellow card of the season and earned a suspension for the second time this season. Defender Mario Hermoso's two-game suspension will keep him out of this fixture as well.
Sime Vrsaljko is the only major injury concern for Simeone, as Joao Felix, who missed their previous game due to an ankle injury, took part in the first training session ahead of Sunday's game.
Marcos Llorente, the goalscorer from their win over Getafe, had to be taken off in the 75th minute of that game but confirmed later that it was only as a precaution.
We expect a lot of rotations to be made in the starting XI, providing some of the players a much-needed rest after a gruelling league schedule ahead of Atlético Madrid's UEFA Champions League clash with RB Leipzig.
Injuries: Sime Vrsaljko (Knee)
Doubtful: Joao Felix (Ankle)
Suspensions: Mario Hermoso, Saul Niguez.
Real Sociedad have one of the lengthiest injury lists among La Liga teams, with as many as six players out injured. Aritz Elustondo, Jon Bautista, Adnan Januzaj and Ander Guevara are only expected to return when the new season begins. Asier Illarramendi and Luca Sangalli are long-term absentees, not expected to return this year.
Imanol Alguacil did not start Martin Odegaard in their previous fixture and it is expected that the on-loan Real Madrid player will start against Atlético Madrid.
Injuries: Aritz Elustondo (Thigh), Jon Bautista (Foot), Adnan Januzaj (Thigh), Ander Guevara (Knee), Asier Illarramendi (Hip), Luca Sangalli (Knee).
Atlético Madrid vs Real Sociedad Predicted XI
Atlético Madrid Predicted XI (4-4-2): Jan Oblak; Santiago Arias, Jose Gimenez, Stefan Savic, Renan Lodi; Angel Correa, Thomas Partey, Marcos Llorente, Koke; Diego Costa, Alvaro Morata.
Real Sociedad Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Miguel Moya; Andoni Gorosabel, Diego Llorente, Robin Le Normand, Nacho Monreal; Martín Zubimendi, Mikel Merino; Mikel Oyarzabal, Martin Odegaard, Portu; Willian Jose.
Atlético Madrid vs Real Sociedad Prediction
Atlético Madrid are only behind city rivals and La Liga 2019-20 champions Real Madrid in terms of form in the league fixtures. They have been solid defensively, with goalkeeper Jan Oblak keeping five clean sheets in the last 10 games.
La Real struggled against the top of the table sides in the early stages of the La Liga restart, but have managed to put in solid performances against Villarreal and Sevilla in their last two fixtures. They have found it hard to score goals consistently and this could prove their undoing against a solid Atlético Madrid defence.
We expect it to be a close fixture ending in a victory for the hosts owing to their fine form and the fact that they have not lost at home since December.
Final Prediction:- Atlético Madrid 2-1 Real Sociedad
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