Atletico Madrid won the first leg 4-1, roaring back after conceding the first goal.

By 90Min
February 21, 2018

Atletico Madrid will be looking to secure their place in the Europa League's round of 16 when they face Danish champions FC Copenhagen at the Wanda Metropolitano on Thursday.

The La Liga giants eased through the first leg with a 4-1 victory in the Danish capital. Former Middlesborough winger Victor Fischer opened the scoring for the Superliga side, but Saul Niguez's close range header equalized things soon after.

Kevin Gameiro's 37th minute strike gave the Spanish side a deserved lead, before two half-time strikes from Antoine Griezmann (71) and Vitolo (77) confirmed an excellent away result for Diego Simeone.


Key Battles

The Lions will have to score at least four goals against one of the toughest defences in Europe. So far, this season the 5th-placed Superliga side have scored on average 1.9 league goals per game. Atletico, on the other hand, have conceded just 0.4 league goals per game - the fewest in La Liga, while at the other end they have scored 1.5 goals per game.

If Ståle Solbakken's side are going to stand any chance of going through to the next round, they will have to attack from the off and hope that Pieros Sotiriou can get the better of veteran center back Diego Godin.

At the other end, Denis Vavro and Michael Lüftnerhave will have to try and disrupt through balls to the pacy striking duo of Griezmann and Gameiro.


Team News

Atletico have no new injury concerns after Sunday's 2-0 win over Athletic Bilbao.

Montenegrin and former Manchester City defender Stefan Savic remains sidelined with a hamstring injury which is expected to keep him out until the end of the month.

After Sunday's 3-1 league defeat to Midtjylland, Copenhagen will have the same squad available to them as in the home leg.

Midfielder Aboubakar Keita is still recovering from an operation, while defender Erik Johansson continues his lengthy rehabilitation after he suffered a serious knee injury in August.


Prediction

On paper, an Atletico victory looks like a foregone conclusion, but Simeone might decide to rest some of his players which may offer the Danish side a glimmer of hope.

The La Liga side will be happy with another victory and probably won't look to attack at every opportunity. Nevertheless, the game should still see a few goals scored.

Prediction: Atletico Madrid 3-1 FC Copenhagen (aggregate 7-2)

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