Preview: Alaves vs. Atletico Madrid

Preview: Alaves vs. Atletico Madrid

Atletico Madrid will look to record a second straight victory in their push to reach the summit of the La Liga table when they travel to take on basement side Alaves on Saturday.

The defending champions netted a late winner to take all three points against Getafe last time out, while their hosts are yet to pick up a result from their opening five games of the season.

After narrowly avoiding relegation last season, Alaves headed into the new campaign prepared to again battle for survival, but they have not got off to an ideal start, currently propping up the division having failed to pick up a point.

While the opening 4-1 defeat to title-chasing Real Madrid is somewhat understandable, albeit in a disappointing manner, the following 1-0 defeat to newly-promoted Mallorca and 3-0 loss at the hands of Valencia provided far more cause for concern.

El Glorioso’s problems were then compounded by a 2-0 home defeat to Osasuna after an uninspiring performance, before Javier Calleja’s men were handed a fifth straight league loss last time out, as Raul de Tomas converted a penalty in a 1-0 win for newly-promoted Espanyol.

Now sitting at the foot of the division as one of just two teams without a point, having only netted one goal, things are looking bleak at the Mendizorrotza Stadium, and their schedule does not get any easier as they welcome the defending champions who will look to regain top spot with another win.

After their dominant title win last term, Los Colchoneros have somewhat struggled for consistency so far this campaign, but still sit in second spot nonetheless.

Diego Simeone’s side have won four of their opening six La Liga games, while remaining without a defeat, seeing them trail city rivals and league leaders Real Madrid by just two points at this stage.

After a stalemate with Porto in the opening Champions League group game, and a disappointing goalless draw with Athletic Bilbao upon their return to league domestic action, the capital side bounced back to winning ways in dramatic fashion last time out.

Los Colchoneros travelled to Getafe, who are also yet to earn a point, but fell behind as a long-range effort hit the post and bizarrely bounced into the net off goalkeeper Jan Oblak, and it took until the 78th minute for Luis Suarez to draw his side level, before he headed in a 91st-minute winner to snatch all three points.

That was the third time that Simeone’s side have scored a decisive goal in injury time so far this season, suggesting that, while they are yet to fully click and begin dominating teams, they often have the grit to salvage a late result – a trait that the Spanish manager will be pleased with.

However, they will still be keen to put some more convincing victories on the board, and Saturday presents a good opportunity to do that against La Liga’s basement side.

Alaves La Liga form:
Atletico Madrid La Liga form:
Atletico Madrid form (all competitions):

We say: Alaves 0-3 Atletico Madrid
While Los Colchoneros have not been overly convincing so far, we can only see their talented squad coming out of Saturday’s game with a dominant victory.

With the hosts only netting one goal so far, Simeone’s defence should not be overly troubled, while they boast a quality-filled attacking line that is more than capable of running riot of the basement side.

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