Atletico Madrid struck by unusual issue as decisive stretch looms

Atletico Madrid are hitting the crunch phase of their season, and will be hoping for progress in both of their remaining cup competitions, but have had the breaks put on them in their last two matches. The next month, before the March international break, Atletico will likely have a much better understanding of whether their season will be successful or not.

They cannot afford to take their eye off the ball too much in La Liga over the coming month, with Athletic Club just two points behind them in fifth place. Ahead lie Las Palmas (H), Almeria (A), Real Betis (H), Cadiz (A) and Barcelona (H) before the international break.

Mixed in are the crucial Champions League legs against Inter away (20/2), at home (13/3) and the return leg against Athletic Club in the Copa del Rey semi-finals (29/2), when they must overturn a 1-0 deficit to make it through to the final.

The issue is that Los Rojiblancos have been relying on their explosive offence all season to cover up their defensive deficencies and before the past week were averaging 2.32 goals per game, totalling 71 for the season already. However two 1-0 defeats to Athletic and Sevilla saw them take 36 shots over the course of 180 minutes, but failed to put the ball away, as reported by Marca. If they cannot do so in the coming weeks, it could be real struggle for Diego Simeone’s side.

Memphis Depay has returned to the side in good form in 2024, but an injury to Alvaro Morata, which will keep him out for a few weeks will exacerbate the problem. In addition, Antoine Griezmann has looked tired and less effective in recent weeks.

The onus will be on Angel Correa and Memphis to step up in the coming weeks, while Samuel Lino and Rodrigo Riquelme will also be asked to provide goals. None of their central midfielders are known for providing goals, and as such, it will be the forwards and wide players that are required to ease the load on Griezmann.

Tags Athletic Club Atletico Madrid Champions League Copa del Rey Inter
La Liga - Club News