Atlético Madrid will warm up for Wednesday’s clash with Juventus by facing off with city rivals Rayo Vallecano.
Atlético have it in mind to snap a two-match losing streak at Vallecas and jump above Real Madrid into second place in LaLiga. Diego Simeone — he of the fresh three-year contract extension — has not led his men into defeat at Rayo in over six years, and he is set to welcome back a couple important players for this one. Just in time, too.
Rayo, meanwhile, embarked on a good run of form to begin 2019 but have just one win in their past four — and they enter this match on a two-game losing streak of their own. Their danger man is forward Raúl de Tomás — better known as RdT. The on-loan Real Madrid striker has nine goals to his name in 2018/19.
Rodri — benched to begin last week’s Madrid Derby — is expected back in Simeone’s XI along with Filipe Luís, who did not play that match. Vitolo could be handed only his second league start, and it’s anticipated that Diego Costa will receive minutes off the bench. Lucas (knee sprain) and Koke (muscular injury) will not play, though the latter should be fit by Wednesday.
Oblak; Arias, Giménez, Godín, Filipe Luís; Rodri, Saúl, Correa, Vitolo; Griezmann, Morata.
Rayo Vallecano 0-1 Atlético Madrid.
How to watch
Date: Feb. 16, 2019
Location: Campo de Fútbol de Vallecas, Madrid, Spain
Kickoff time: 16:15 CET, 15:15 GMT, 10:15 a.m. EST, 7:15 a.m. PST
SB Nation opposition blog: N/A
Available TV/streaming: beIN LaLiga, Movistar+ (Spain), fubo.tv, beIN Sports Connect (United States), beIN Sports MAX 8 (France), DAZN (Italy), DIRECTV Sports (Colombia), DIRECTV Play Deportes (Uruguay), PPTV Sport (China).