Barcelona vs. Atletico Madrid 1/9/20 Spanish Super Cup Soccer Semifinals Pick, Odds, and Prediction
1/9/20 2 pm
Over 2.5 (-110), Under 2.5 (-110)
Barcelona and Atletico Madrid are the second matchup of Spanish Super Cup semifinals being played in King Abdullah Sports City in Saudi Arabia.
Barcelona is at the top of LaLiga with 40 points, but they didn’t have a particularly good game this past weekend in a Barcelona derby against Espanyol. Barcelona was dominant in this match with 69% of ball possession, 7 shots on goal, 5 corner kicks, and 89% of the correct passes, but Barcelona’s defense wasn’t playing well, and the game ended in a 2-2 draw. The biggest problem for Barcelona and coach Valverde right now is that Messi is still pretty inconsistent, and when Messi isn’t having his day, Barcelona isn’t playing well, and they are not creating a lot of chances. Despite the inconsistency, Messi is Barcelona’s leading goal scorer with 13 goals and 6 assists, followed by Suarez with 11 goals and 7 assists. At the beginning of the season, Messi, Suarez, and Griezmann weren’t playing good together, but as the season progressed, all three of them started understanding each other much better, and with that Barcelona started scoring a lot more goals. On the defensive end, Barcelona has to sign another one of two central defenders because Pique isn’t that young anymore, and Langlet tends to make mistakes when no one is expecting. Dembele, Arthur, and Barcelona’s starting goalkeeper ter Stegen are all injured. Marc-Andre ter Steagen’s injury was certainly unexpected and it happened just when he was playing in brilliant form, but Neto is a decent enough substitution.
Atletico Madrid has shown us in their last 3 games that they can score more than 1 goal per game, and because of that, Atletico has won their last 3 games in LaLiga. In their last LaLiga match against Levante at home, Atletico had 39% of ball possession, but 8 shots on goal, 5 corner kicks, and 77% of the correct passes. It was the usual match for Atletico Madrid where they let the opponent have the possession, but Atletico is playing great defense and patient soccer. Atletico has won this match 2-1. With 35 points, Atletico is in third place in LaLiga standings, but Sevilla is right behind them with the same amount of points. Atletico was struggling for a while when their two starting defenders Savic and Gimenez were injured, but both are now healthy and expected to be in the starting lineups. Morata is Atletico’s top goalscorer with 7 goals, while Correa has 3 goals and 4 assists. Costa has been injured for some time now, but injuries of Koke and Lemar are a huge blow for coach Simeone because both are of huge importance for Atletico’s midfield. Atletico Madrid has conceded only 12 goals in LaLiga so far and is the best defensive team in Spain and one of the best in Europe. Same as Real Madrid, Atletico hasn’t one a competition in a while, and I believe they will do everything possible to win this one. I don’t expect that coach Simeone will change something in Atletico’s tactic and game style, instead, Atletico will focus on defense and counterattacks, but will that be enough against Barcelona’s atomic offense, we will see.
Atletico didn’t have a lot of success against Barcelona for the last few years, but in competitions like this, competitions that are being played outside the homeland, with zero to none of the home fans, you can never know. I believe that Atletico can score a goal here because Barcelona’s defense is shaky, but can Atletico keep the ball out of their own net against Messi, Suarez, and Griezmann, I don’t think so. I will take Barcelona and goals.