It is back to LaLiga play for Atlético Madrid on Saturday. Los colchoneros host Real Betis in the first league home game of the Vicente Calderón’s final year, hoping to hang on to a spot in the top four as the season’s midway point approaches.
Atlético (9-4-4, 31 points) have improved some since a 3-0 loss at Villarreal on Dec. 12. Diego Simeone’s charges have notched back-to-back clean sheets and wins over Las Palmas and Eibar, thus regaining a spot in Liga Santander’s top four. Real Betis (6-3-8, 21 points) endured a rocky start under Gus Poyet but have steadied the ship since his dismissal. Betis have won three of the past six in LaLiga but haven't won away from home in nearly three months.
Atleti have recovered Yannick Carrasco’s services in time for Betis’ visit, as the Belgian appears to have warded off a troublesome Achilles injury. Kévin Gameiro has recovered from his bout of flu and is set to play as well. Indeed, Simeone has a pretty healthy squad - notwithstanding the long-term injures to Augusto Fernández, Jan Oblak and Tiago. Thomas Partey is with Ghana for the African Cup of Nations.
Atlético squad: Moyà, Bernabé, Godín, Filipe Luís, Savić, Vrsaljko, Juanfran, Giménez, Koke, Saúl, Carrasco, Gabi, Gaitán, Keidi, Griezmann, Torres, Correa, Gameiro.
Date: Jan. 14, 2017
Location: Estadio Vicente Calderón, Madrid, Spain
Kick-off time: 17:30 PM GMT/BST, 12:30 EST, 9:30 PST
SB Nation Opposition Blog: N/A
Available TV/streaming: beIN LaLiga (Spain), Sky Sports Red Button (UK), beIN Sports/fuboTV (United States)