clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Atlético de Madrid - S.S. Lazio: Group E is on the line

A draw is all Atlético need to clinch first place.

Atletico Madrid v UD Almeria - LaLiga EA Sports
Koke will make his 91st Champions League appearance for Atlético, extending his own record.
Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images

Atlético de Madrid and Società Sportiva Lazio will close the book on UEFA Champions League group E — and the competition’s group stage format as we know it — with a meeting Wednesday night to determine which side will go through in first place.

A win or a draw for Atlético Madrid (3-2-0, 11 points) will see Los Rojiblancos emerge as group winners, and they would thus enter Monday’s round of 16 draw as a seeded team. But Ciro Immobile, Ivan Provedel, and Lazio (3-1-1, 10 points) will not make it easy as Atlético bid for its 20th consecutive home win in all competitions. The Serie A runners-up have kept consecutive clean sheets in the Champions League, and if Sarri’s men win on Wednesday night, it would mark Lazio’s first time finishing top of a Champions League group since the 1999/2000 season — when Diego Simeone was roaming the Roman side’s midfield.

“I’m happy that both teams have advanced to the round of 16,” Simeone told reporters on Tuesday. “Lazio is a club that I will never forget because of what it gave me as a player, and I hold it dear.”

Atlético have not topped its Champions League group since the 2016/17 edition, the team’s final season playing at Estadio Vicente Calderón. Atleti have not lost any of its past seven Champions League games inside the Metropolitano — with another Italian side, AC Milan, as the last team to defeat Los Colchoneros in their own backyard in this competition, more than two years ago.

“The results that we’re getting at home are very important,” defender Mario Hermoso told reporters on Tuesday.

Hermoso, one of the heroes in Atlético’s win over Feyenoord in matchday five, will return to the starting 11 on Wednesday after Simeone rested him against Almería over the weekend. This could be among Hermoso’s final Champions League games at the club, as the 28-year-old is on an expiring contract and will be free to negotiate with other sides beginning Jan. 1.

Relevo’s Matteo Moretto last week reported that Hermoso and Atlético have not spoken about a new contract since the summer — and that there is a growing expectation the ball-playing center-back will leave on a free transfer in 2024.

Date Dec. 13, 2023

Location Estadio Metropolitano, Madrid

Kickoff time 9:00 p.m. CET, 8:00 p.m. GMT, 3:00 p.m. EST, 12:00 p.m. PST

Available TV/streaming Paramount+, CBS Sports Network (United States), TNT Sports 4 (United Kingdom), Movistar+ (Spain)