Atletico Madri welcome Villarreal to the Wanda Metropolitano on Sunday in a crucial game for both teams at opposite ends of the table.
A win for Diego Simeone's men could see them close the gap to league leaders Barcelona to just four points, while also extending their advantage over neighbourhood rivals Real Madrid to five.
Los Colchoneros will be high on confidence after sealing a hugely important 2-0 win over Serie A champions Juventus in midweek Champions League action.
Their opponents Villarreal will be feeling confident after they put in their best performance of the season to beat Sevilla 3-0 last weekend.
Javier Calleja's men put on a masterclass in both defence and attack, against a team 14 places above them in La Liga.
Check out 90min's preview of the clash below.
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Sunday 24 February|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||15:15 GMT|
|Where Is It Played?||Wanda Metropolitano|
|TV Channel/Live Stream||Eleven Sports 1|
|Referee||Alberto Undiano Mallenco|
Diego Simeone's only potential absentee for this encounter will be Lucas Hernandez, with the Frenchman also having missed the midweek fixture against Juventus.
Diego Costa was eased back into it on Wednesday night after recently recovering from a back injury, and can expect to start again up front despite the presence of Alvaro Morata.
Koke was another player to return to action in midweek, and he should be fit enough to start once more for Los Rojiblancos.
Villarreal, meanwhile, rested star man Santi Cazorla for their Europa League draw with Sporting CP, so he could return to the Yellow Submarines starting line-up Santiago Caseres is suspended after picking up a fifth yellow card against Sevilla, and midfielder Bruno Soriano is an injury doubt.
|Atletico||Oblak; Arias, Godin, Giminez, Filipe Luis; Koke, Rodri, Saul, Lemar; Costa, Griezmann.|
|Villarreal||Asenjo; Gonzales, Funes Mori, Ruiz; Iborra, Gaspar, Cazorla, Fuego, Pedraza; Bacca, Toko Ekambi.|
Head to Head Record
The two sides have played 33 competitive fixtures against one another, with the results pretty even over the year. Villarreal edge the head-to-head with 13 victories, with Atletico winning 12 and eight games ending all square.
Their most recent encounter ended in a 1-1 draw in October last year, with Atletico now on a run of five games without a win against Villarreal.
Los Rojiblancos look to have overcome a slight dip in form, as they've responded to back-to-back defeats with two wins on the spin.
Simeone's charges will have to be in top form though if they are to pick up all three points at home on Sunday - though they will feel confident in their ability to keep a clean sheet.
Villarreal have kept clean sheets in three of their last five league games - not bad for a team embroiled in relegation trouble. They have only picked up two victories in that time though and will be conscious to convert promising performances into victories.
Here's how both sides have performed in their last five encounters:
|Atletico 2-0 Juventus (20/02)||Villarreal 1-1 Sporting CP (21/02)|
|Rayo Vallecano 0-1 Atletico (16/02)||Villarreal 3-0 Sevilla (17/02)|
|Atletico 1-3 Real Madrid (09/02)||Sporting CP 0-1 Villarreal (14/02)|
|Real Betis 1-0 Atletico (03/02)||Vallodolid 0-0 Villarreal (08/02)|
|Atletico 2-0 Getafe (26/01)||Villarreal 2-2 Espanyol (03/02)|
Atletico are favourites heading into the game, with their form at the Wanda Metropolitano showing no sign of relenting.
Simeone's men have won nine, drawn two and lost just once at home in La Liga this season, conceding just seven goals in the process.
Three of those goals came in the recent Madrid derby against Real, and it seems unlikely that Villarreal will be able to replicate those goalscoring feats despite their recent form.
Prediction: Atletico Madrid 2-0 Villarreal.