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Simeone’s Atleti face Valencia in crunch La Liga clash

In what is being billed as one of the European football clashes of the weekend, Atletico Madrid host Valencia, with just one point separating the two teams.

Reigning La Liga champions Atletico are odds-on with Coral at 8/13 to win the match, though haven’t recorded a victory in their last two matches. A Sevilla stalemate in their previous outing was a slight improvement on a narrow 1-0 defeat to Bayer Leverkusen in the first leg of the Champions League last 16 prior to that, though Valencia won’t be any less of a weaker obstacle.

Atleti’s last league win came at the expense of Almeria, who they beat 3-0, with Antoine Griezmann bagging a brace. The talented French forward has amassed 17 goals in 38 appearances across all competitions this term; however, Diego Simeone will have to cope without him due to suspension, after wrapping his studs around Aleix Vidal’s knee against Sevilla.

With that in mind, it is Mario Mandzukic’s chance to shine. The Croatia frontman, who like Griezmann was a summer signing, has been in fantastic form since swapping Bayern Munich for Madrid, scoring 20 goals in 34 appearances across all competitions and, as a result is 10/3 to grab the opener.

Earlier in the campaign, Valencia were victors in the reverse fixture inflicting a 3-1 defeat on Simeone’s men. Mandzukic got on the scoresheet, and will be looking for more of the same, which is why he is odds-on at 4/5 in the anytime market. Fernando Torres has hit the ground running since returning to his boyhood club, and is 4/1 to break the deadlock, while Koke is 2/1 in the anytime market.

For Valencia, Nicolas Otamendi who also notched in that fixture, is 16/1 in the anytime market. Nuno Espirito Santo’s side have won their last four league fixtures and Argentine attacker Pablo Piatti has found the net on four occasions.

The in-form 25-year-old is a stunning 7/2 to dispatch anytime, while Andre Gomes, who also scored in the reverse, is 6/1 in the same market. Portugal player Gomes netted in Valencia’s last away match; a 2-1 win over Cordoba. Alvaro Negredo, meanwhile, is a good value 11/4 to find the net anytime.