Facing a 3-0 deficit from the first leg at the Santiago Bernabéu a week ago, Atlético Madrid face an enormous task as they attempt to reach a third Champions League final in four years.
A Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick has put the tie practically out of sight for Diego Simeone’s men, but that doesn’t mean he won’t select a full strength side in order to, at the very least, restore some much needed pride to the red side of the Spanish capital.
Ten points behind Real and Barcelona, and five points clear of fourth-placed Sevilla, this is still the biggest of the club’s three remaining games this season — even if it already looks all over.
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The main conundrum Simeone faces in terms of selection is at the back. First choice right-back Juanfran is out which means Stefan Savić could fill in alongside centre-backs Diego Godín and Lucas Hernández — like in the first leg. Alternatively, Thomas Partey could be included in Savić’s place, as was the case in Saturday’s 1-0 win over Eibar.
We think Kévin Gameiro will get the nod over Fernando Torres, with the 30-year-old France international scoring two goals since his return from a thigh injury.
Two seasons ago Atlético beat their cross-city rivals 4-0 at the Vicente Calderón. Only a scoreline of that magnitude will do tonight, but to achieve it every single member of this XI will have to put in the performance of their lives.