Atletico Madrid travel to the Montilivi Stadium to take on Girona in Wednesday night’s Copa del Rey round of 16 first leg.
Girona have caused Atletico trouble in recent seasons, with Los Colchoneros unable to beat them since their promotion to Spain’s top flight two seasons ago.
These two sides are no strangers to stalemates, especially against one another, with the last three meetings between the sides ending level. Furthermore, Girona have managed to draw eight matches from 18 in La Liga this season – coincidentally the same amount as Atletico.
The fact that this is a Copa del Rey tie and will be contested over two legs only serves to further underline that the game will likely be a tight affair.
Check out 90min’s preview of the game below.
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Wednesday 9 January|
|What Time is Kick Off?||18.30 (BST)|
|Where Is it Played?||Montilivi Stadium|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||N/A|
Eusebio Sacristan’s Girona continue to impress in La Liga and after 18 games their current position of ninth will please their loyal fan base.
However, all is not rosy in the medical department, as Sacristan faces the prospect of missing up to six senior players.
Seydou Doumbia, Patrick Roberts, Pere Pons, Aday, Carles Planas and Johan Mojica are all doubtful for Wednesday night’s clash.
Atletico don’t fare much better in the injury department, with Diego Simeone dealing with five injuries as they aim to chase down league leaders Barcelona in La Liga and claim domestic cup glory.
Diego Costa, Gelson Martins, Thomas Lemar, Lucas and Filipe Luis are all expected to miss the away trip to Girona in what is shaping up to be an injury tainted tie.
However, World Cup star Antoine Griezmann will lead the line after scoring eight goals in 18 matches.
Nikola Kalinic has two goals but his performances have suggested his is capable of adding to his tally so far.
|Girona||Bounou; Espinosa, Juanpe, Ramalho; Porro, Garcia, Portu, Marc Muniesa; Lozano, Stuani, Garcia.|
|Atletico Madrid||Adán; Arias, Montero, Giménez, Juanfran; Thomas, Saúl, Vitolo, Koke; Greizmann, Correa.|
Head to Head
These two sides have only faced one another since Girona secured promotion to the Spanish top flight two seasons ago, and it is fair to say neither side has produced magical football against one another.
In each of the three matches the score has remained level after 90 minutes. However, if there is a positive to take, it is that they have all been score draws.
With the Copa del Rey back, each of these sides will be eyeing the competition as a source for potential silverware, with the meeting set to be just the fourth between the two sides.
Girona have impressed in La Liga this season, however are currently experiencing a winter winless run which has now stretched to four matches in all competitions, and will find the task of beating Atletico tough.
However, they do have a home record to be proud off, avoiding defeat in any of their previous five will give Girona great confidence ahead of this tie.
Meanwhile, Atletico Madrid have managed to avoid defeat in all competitions since October and will surely fancy themselves to get a positive result here.
They have already secured victories away to Valladolid, Getafe and Monaco this season, and picked up an encouraging points away to Sevilla on the weekend and therefore should be confident of securing the first leg win.
Here’s a look at each sides last five results.
|Levante 2-2 Girona (4/1)||Sevilla 1-1 Atletico Madrid (6/1)|
|Girona 1-1 Getafe (21/12)||Atletico Madrid 1-0 Espanyol (22/12)|
|Sevilla 2-0 Girona (16/12)||Valladolid 2-3 Atletico Madrid (15/12)|
|Athletic Bilbao 1-0 Girona (10/12)||Club Brugge 0-0 Atletico Madrid (11/12)|
|Girona 2-1 Alaves (5/12)||Atletico Madrid 3-0 Alaves (8/12)|
Atletico Madrid will be looking to get a good result to take back to the Wanda Metropolitano in order to give them the best chance of progressing.
Neither side has particularly impressed against one another, however a number of injuries could see the gulf in class in each squad, with Simone able to utilise a larger pool of quality players for his selection.
Girona have been strong at home recently, but with injury to a number of senior players, it is likely the Atletico may just clinch it.