Real Madrid vs Atletico Prediction: Back Ancelotti’s side to triumph

 | January 09 | 

6 mins read

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The big names of Spanish football are off to Saudi Arabia for the fourth edition of the Super Cup to be staged in the Middle East. That means we’ve got a Madrid derby in the unlikely location of Riyadh’s Al-Awwal Stadium to look forward to on Wednesday.

Our Spanish football expert Mark Sochon is here with his thoughts ahead of this one...

Real Madrid vs Atletico Betting Tips:

  • Back Both Teams to Score @ 8/11
  • Back Real Madrid to Win the Match @ Evens

Even before the Spanish football federation decided to cash in on the tournament by moving it to Saudi Arabia, the Supercopa was not a major priority for the big clubs. However that’s not to say it’s not taken seriously and we can expect both Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid to go as strong as possible with their team selections here.

Real Madrid have lost just one game this season and that was the derby against Atletico back in September at the Estadio Metropolitano. Back then, talk of an Atleti title challenge was all the rage and it was Carlo Ancelotti who had more questions to answer with his forwards misfiring and three goals conceded in just 46 minutes against their city rivals.

Fast forward to January and it’s safe to say that Real Madrid are much the more convincing team heading into the second derby of the season. This is actually the first of three meetings in the space of a month with the big two from the Spanish capital also set to meet in the Copa del Rey next week while the reverse league fixture is on the first weekend of February.

From an Atletico Madrid perspective, their domestic campaign is now almost entirely dependent on how they perform in those three matches against their biggest rivals.

On current form, it’s hard to fancy their chances. Defensively, things have really unravelled with their last three league games including a 3-3 home draw against Getafe, where they were reduced to ten men and allowed their opponents to have 29 attempts on goal, as well as a damaging 4-3 loss at Girona.

They’ve only the joint 7th best defensive record in La Liga which is almost unthinkable for a Diego Simeone team and it’s four away defeats on the spin in the league, a run which has left them ten points off the pace.

By contrast, Real Madrid have got more assured as the season has progressed. Aside from the derby defeat, they’ve let in just 8 goals in 18 league games, although the recent loss of David Alaba to an ACL injury, does leave them more vulnerable in the heart of the defence.

The usually dependable Nacho has been anything but in his attempts to fill in for Alaba so far, getting sent off in Real Madrid’s final league game of 2023 against Alaves while he scored an own goal in the 3-1 win over minnows Arandina in the Copa del Rey on Saturday.

That’s one area where Atletico Madrid will fancy they can cause problems for their opponents here, particularly with Alvaro Morata playing perhaps the best football of his career with 21 goals for club and country this term.

Team News:

Real Madrid have jetted off to Riyadh with everyone present with the exception of Lucas Vazquez, as well as long-term absentees Thibaut Courtois, Eder Militao and David Alaba.

They rested a number of senior stars in the Copa del Rey at the weekend, but we can expect Carlo Ancelotti to recall the likes of Jude Bellingham, Fede Valverde, Antonio Rudiger, Rodrygo and Vinicius to the starting eleven here.

Diego Simeone will also go as strong as possible with Atleti only two games away from winning a competition they’ve only ever won twice.

Atletico Madrid are in pretty good shape selection-wise with Thomas Lemar their only notable absentee. They’re likely to go with their usual 3-5-2 with Morata and Antoine Griezmann up front as they were in September when the duo scored all the goals in a 3-1 derby victory.

Real Madrid vs Atletico Odds:

Real Madrid are the favourites to win this game at Evens while the Draw is 23/10 and an Atletico Madrid victory can also be backed at 23/10.

You can get odds of 5/2 for Real Madrid to Win to Nil while Real Madrid and Both Teams to Score is available at 3/1.

There are plenty of strong goalscorer candidates for punters to pick from here with some reliable goal threats on both sides of the Madrid divide.

For Real, you can back Rodrygo to score anytime at 15/8 and Vinicius Junior to score anytime at 9/5 with the Brazilians expected to be the strike pairing for Los Blancos in this game. Jude Bellingham is 6/1 to score first and 21/10 to score anytime with La Liga’s top scorer targeting a first Madrid derby goal.

Alvaro Morata is only one behind Bellingham in the Pichichi race after he scored a hat-trick in defeat at Girona last week. Morata is 2/1 to score anytime here while you can back Antoine Griezmann to score anytime at 21/10.

Bet 1 - Both Teams to Score @ 8/11

With both Simeone and Ancelotti able to call on all of their main attacking talents, this looks like it could follow the pattern of the meeting earlier in the season by being far more open than many of the Madrid derbies we’ve witnessed in recent years.

Atletico Madrid do not convince defensively at the moment and it’s hard to see an in-form Real Madrid that has only failed to score on one occasion this season, not getting on the scoresheet at least once in this game.

Their opponents are enjoying a good season in front of goal though and with Morata and Griezmann combining well, I’m backing Both Teams to Score at 8/11.

Bet 2 - Real Madrid to Win @ Evens

In terms of the likely victor, it’s hard to look past Real Madrid. With the possible exception of Girona, they’ve been the best team in Spain by some distance this season. Things are going so

well that they’ve even decided to reward Carlo Ancelotti with a new contract which is testament to just how smooth things are progressing, in what had the potential to be a transitional kind of season.

Nobody expected Jude Bellingham to be as good as he has been from virtually day one, while early season doubts over the ability of Vinicius and Rodrygo to play together in a front two have eased.

Los Blancos can also still count on veterans Toni Kroos and Luka Modric to put in classy displays to supplement the energy of their younger midfielders and overall, it feels like they might have a bit too much for their rivals here so I’m backing Real Madrid to Win at Evens.

You can check out Mark's La Liga Betting Tips along with those from the rest of the Betfred Insights Spanish Football writers on our La Liga home page...

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