“Health and maintenance” will be the name of the game when Leganés visit Atlético Madrid on Saturday, as the hosts will look to warm up for Juventus on Tuesday with a fourth straight league win.
In this fixture last season, fans at A Stadium Called Wanda witnessed a special performance from one Antoine Griezmann — the Frenchman scored all his team’s goals in a 4-0 win last February, and he scored his side’s only goal when these two teams last met on Nov. 3. Atlético enter this match seven points behind Barcelona but five points up on Real Madrid, leaving them somewhat comfortably in second place. This advantage — and the upcoming Champions League Round of 16 fixture in Italy — means Diego Simeone can afford to rest some players on Saturday afternoon.
Juanfran, Saúl, Thomas Lemar and Álvaro Morata likely will not be named in Simeone’s squad for this one, while Koke (red card) and Diego Godín (fifth yellow card) will serve suspensions for fouls called during last weekend’s 2-0 win over Real Sociedad. Simeone will start Atleti B left back Andrés Solano with both Filipe and Lucas injured — Juanfran will almost certainly return to the position on Tuesday. Other canteranos like Víctor Mollejo might receive opportunities as well.
The visitors will not go quietly, though, and have their own lofty ambitions. Mauricio Pellegrino’s Leganés sit 11th in the table on 33 points — amazingly, only four points off the final Europa League place. However, they have been dreadful away from Butarque, with just two wins from 13 this season.
Oblak; Arias, Savić, Giménez, Solano; Thomas, Rodri, Correa, Vitolo; Griezmann, Kalinić.
Atlético 1-0 Leganés.
How to watch
Date: March 9, 2019
Location: Estadio Wanda Metropolitano, Madrid, Spain
Kickoff time: 4:15 p.m. CET, 3:15 p.m. GMT, 10:15 a.m. EST, 7:15 a.m. PST
SB Nation opposition blog: N/A
Available TV/streaming: Movistar+, beIN LaLiga (Spain), fubo.tv, beIN Sports (United States), beIN Sports Connect (France), DAZN (Italy), ESPN Play Sur (Argentina), SuperSport 7 (Ghana), ESPN 2 Sur (Uruguay), PPTV Sport (China).