Real Betis vs. Atletico Madrid 12/22/19 Spanish LaLiga Soccer Pick, Odds, and Prediction
12/22/19 10 am
Over 2.5 (+110), Under 2.5 (-138)
Real Betis is hosting Atletico Madrid at Benito Villamarin stadium in round 18 of Spanish LaLiga.
Betis is playing solid soccer this season and is on a 5-game streak without a loss. Betis has scored at least 2 goals in all their last 5 games, while they haven’t conceded a goal in only 1 of those 5 games. With 23 points, 24 scored goals, and 29 conceded goals, Betis in 12th place, but the point difference between Betis and Real Sociedad in 6th place is only 5 points. In their latest LaLiga match versus Espanyol away from home, Betis was solid with 63% of ball possession, 5 shots on goal, and 78% of accurate passes. Once again Betis’ attack was up to the task, but their defense has failed them, and the game ended in a 2-2 draw. Loren Moron has scored 8 goals for Betis this season, while Joaquin added 6 goals. Junami, Carvalho, and Pedraza are injured and will not be in the lineup. Betis has a great team with players like Borja Iglesias, Nabil Fekir, Sergio Canales, William Carvalho, and Marc Bartra, but all these players except Bartra are midfielders and attackers. What Betis needs are another 2 experienced defenders that could raise their defense to another level, and with that, the whole team would be playing better and winning more points. Betis does have the quality to compete with the big dogs in LaLiga, but they don’t have the depth to do that consistently and for that reason, I don’t think that Betis can get to the spot that will take them to one of the European competitions.
Atletico Madrid seems to be slowly getting out of their slump they have been in for the last month. With two wins in their last two games, and without a conceded goal in those two games, Atletico is showing us that there is still some life left in them. Atletico is in 5th place in LaLiga standings with 29 points, only 18 scored goals and 10 conceded goals which makes them the best defensive team in LaLiga. In their last LaLiga match versus Osasuna at home, Atletico had 47% of ball possession, 9 shots on goal, 6 corner kicks, and 73% of the correct passes. Atletico played their usual patient and calm game with strong defense and they were able to win this match 2-0. In the Champions League, Atletico needed a win against Lokomotiv Moscow in the last game of the group stage, and Atletico did win that match 2-0 and they got qualified to Top 16 of the Champions League. In the first round of the knockouts, Atletico Madrid will play against last season Champions League winner, Liverpool. This will be a tough challenge for this Atletico Madrid squad that doesn’t score a lot of goals. Morata is the leading goal scorer for Atletico with 6 goals, while Correa added 3 assists. Injuries are once again pilling up in Atletico Madrid and some important players like Vitolo, Koke, and Costa are injured, while their starting central defender Savic should be game ready. This is the last game for Atletico Madrid this year which is good news for coach Simeone because his injured player will have time to recover, and the rest of the players will recharge before LaLiga is back. Everyone in Atletico Madrid thought that they have enough quality to compete with Barcelona and Real Madrid for the title, but with the offense like this, Atletico doesn’t stand a chance and that is something coach Simeone has to work on, but knowing him, the defense is the priority.
Betis has had some success versus Atletico Madrid when playing at home. The last 6 games between Betis and Atletico ended with less than 3 goals and I expect the same thing here. I expect a rough match, with a low amount of chances, and 2 goals maximum.