Atletico Madrid say goodbye to 2015 with an interesting derby against Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday night. Los Colchoneros will try to compensate for their defeat in the last game against Malaga in the Stadium Ciudad de Vallecas in the humble neighbourhood on the outskirts of the city. The pitch measurements at the stadium are much smaller and so Cholo adapted Atletico's training ground in order to get used to the conditions.
Rayo Vallecano will try to clean up the image offered of themselves in the last game, having conceded 10 goals at the Santiago Bernabeu. Aside from this, the Argentinian manager praised Pace Jemez' style of play, "they have a very incisive attack. They are a difficult opponent: Their bravery is their greatest virtue and also their biggest defect. It is very difficult to play against ehse kinds of teams."
Youth and talent in the midfield
The absence of Gabi, who was sent off against Malaga, has caused the manager to choose between Oliver and Thomas. The winner of the battle be the number 10 in Atletico's system during Gabi's suspension. Although it is not a new position for Oliver, the coach almost always prefers to play him in the attacking midfield. It seems like a good opportunity for the Academy players to show their skills in the role that best showcases their qualities.
Pending the inclusion of Kranevitter, who has already completed his first training session, but has not yet been entered in the league squad, Saul and Koke remain fixed in the center of the field formed by 3 men in the usual 4-3-3 system.
Jackson is ready but will not start
Jackson Martinez seems to have finally recovered from an ankle injury that has plagued his run-up to Christmas and has been able to get into the squad for the match. The Colombian striker, instead of leaving his country on holiday, has been in Madrid doing recovery work to try to get back up to speed with Simeone's squad.
This could mean his return to the team following an injury that has kept him off the field longer than expected. Fernando Torres will definitely start as Simeone confirmed in his pre-match press conference.
Possible XI: Oblak; Juanfran, Giménez, Godín, Siqueira; Saúl, Koke, Oliver; Griezmann, Carrasco, Torres.
In: Oblak, Moyá, Godín, Giménez, Savic, Siqueira, Juanfran, Gámez, Thomas, Saúl, Koke, Óliver, Carrasco, Correa, Griezmann, Luciano Vietto, Jackson and Torres.
Out: Lucas (Tactical), Filipe Luis, Gabi (suspended), and Tiago (injury).