Barcelona vs Atletico Madrid - Predictions, Betting Odds & Picks
- Barcelona is stuttering at the wrong time as Real Madrid moves clear at top
- Atletico has stabilized and looks set for another top-three finish in a transitional season
- Barcelona has a good record against Atletico and should eke out a win
|What||Barcelona vs Atletico Madrid|
|Where||Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain|
|When||Tuesday, 30 June 2020, 4 PM EST|
|How to watch||beIN SPORTS|
If your glass is half full, Barcelona has made an unbeaten start to La Liga’s resumption and will move back to the top of the table with victory over Atletico Madrid on Tuesday. In such a light, there does not appear to be much need for doom and gloom.
Yet all is not well at the Camp Nou right now. Barcelona’s failure on Saturday to beat a Celta Vigo side that is just one place above the relegation zone saw it lose further ground on Real Madrid, which extended its winning run against Espanyol in the meantime. Quique Setien’s side has now won only four of its last seven games, a return which is simply not good enough if it wants to retain the title this term.
Barcelona’s problems can be found right across the pitch. The defense had been holding up reasonably well before this weekend’s trip to Balaidos, when Celta scored two goals and could have had more. The attack is more reliant on Lionel Messi than ever, and many of its chances are created due to the individual genius of the Argentina international or Luis Suarez. In midfield, there is less control than in years gone by, and the team lacks the incision and precision of old.
All is not lost for the Blaugrana, which remains very much in the title race with six rounds of fixtures remaining. But Barcelona appears to be losing form at the wrong time, with Real Madrid demonstrating the steel and resilience that has been lacking in Catalonia. Barcelona’s failure to beat Atletico this week would put Madrid in pole position to win only its third championship crown since 2008.
Barcelona vs Atletico Madrid Odds
|Match result and margin of win||Odds|
|Barcelona to win by 1||+260|
|Barcelona to win by 2||+450|
|Atletico Madrid to win by 1||+500|
Odds taken 29 June from DraftKings
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Barcelona can at least draw optimism from its recent record against Atletico. It did lose to Diego Simeone’s charges in the Super Cup in January, but the last 19 meetings between the pair in La Liga have produced 14 Barcelona wins and five draws. Remarkably, Atleti has never defeated Barcelona in the top flight under Simeone, and you have to go all the way back to February 2010 for its last victory in this competition.
Atletico possesses one of the meanest defenses on the planet, and Simeone will relish the challenge of keeping Barcelona out on Tuesday. However, a narrow home win – perhaps by a single-goal margin – looks like the most probable outcome.
Barcelona’s Bumpy Form Does Not Bode Well for the Season Run-In
Even in recent wins against Leganes and Athletic Club, Barcelona did not look completely convincing. Following a disappointing spell under Ernesto Valverde, it enjoyed a brief upturn following the appointment of Setien in January – the former Real Betis and Las Palmas head coach won all but one of his first six matches at the helm – but has since been pegged back by Madrid.
Barcelona must travel to Villarreal after this clash with Atletico, but its final four games of the campaign – all of which come against teams currently in the bottom half – do not look too daunting. However, Barca may give itself too much to do if it drops points in its next two outings, which is why Tuesday’s match is so important.
Third-Place Finish Would Be Respectable for Atletico After Much Upheaval
Simeone is now in his ninth season in charge of Atletico, and last summer was one of the most seismic of his reign. Atletico sold star man Antoine Griezmann to Barcelona ahead of the current campaign, and also lost Rodri to Manchester City. Even more significant symbolically were the departures of Juanfran, Filipe Luis and Diego Godin, three long-serving defenders who had been important players for Simeone for years.
Atletico spent big in response, mainly on Joao Felix but also on Marcos Llorente, Felipe, Renan Lodi, Mario Hermoso and Kieran Trippier. Talk of a stylistic revolution abounded, yet Atletico has stayed true to Simeone’s principles by prioritizing defense over attack. It has scored fewer goals than 13th-placed Betis this season but has the second-best defensive record in the division. Barcelona will not be in for an easy game.
Tip Barcelona to Emerge Triumphantly – but Not by Much
Nevertheless, it is difficult to see Atletico ending its wretched run against Barcelona. Simeone is a master at coaching well-organized defenses, but there is an argument that he does not dedicate enough attention to attack, particularly in away games against the likes of Barcelona and Real Madrid when his team is the underdog.
As such, the host will dominate possession at Camp Nou, and although it will not carve open Atletico’s backline time and time again, it will probably do enough to score the one or two goals that should be enough for victory.
Back Barcelona to win by a margin of one goal here – Atletico will keep things tight but Messi and co. should eventually find a way through.