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Atletico Madrid News

Key Atletico Madrid superstar could recover in time for derby, three players doubtful



Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

The Madrid Derby is now the talk of the town as both Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid gear up for their biggest game of the season yet. While Los Rojiblancos need all three points more than their neighbours, Real Madrid are the favourites heading into the clash.

Diego Simeone would ideally want to have his strongest lineup to face the defending champions but faces an acute injury crisis. Jose Maria Gimenez, Jan Oblak, Stefan Savic and Thomas Lemar are out injured and doubtful for the weekend’s game.

According to journalist Pablo Egea, Oblak is the only player who could recover in time to face Real Madrid. Everything indicates that the other three players on the list will not receive the medical all-clear before the key clash.

This comes as a big blow to Simeone’s plans as all three players are a vital part of his starting lineup. In their absence, it appears that he might have to play Axel Witsel out of position to cover the holes in the defence.

Apart from the aforementioned trio, Sergio Reguilon is also unavailable as he continues to recover from his groin issue.

Yet, one must note that Atletico Madrid are not the only team missing key players for the derby. Carlo Ancelotti too will be without the services of Karim Benzema and Lucas Vazquez on the night.

The game will kick off at the Civitas Metropolitano late on Sunday night. While the objective for Real Madrid will be to keep their winning streak alive, Los Rojiblancos will do everything possible to claw their way up the standings after a shaky start.

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Atletico Madrid News

Atletico Madrid midfielder on the derby against Real Madrid: “Very difficult to beat them”



Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images

Following a 1-1 draw in their Champions League opener against Lazio, Atletico Madrid will shift all their attention to La Liga, as they brace themselves for the derby against Real Madrid this weekend.

Heading into this game, Atleti midfielder Marcos Llorente spoke about Real Madrid’s quality and Atletico Madrid’s chances of squeezing all three points from this iconic derby.

Llorente on Madrid derby

“The sensations are good. The team is very good, the other day we played a great game despite ending up drawing. I really think that the team did a great job that must be maintained for this match,” Llorente said in an interview with Diario AS.

When asked whether or not Real Madrid being tagged as favourites could aid Atleti, the midfielder said, “Honestly, it neither motivates me nor demotivates me. We simply have to do what we work on during the week, what the coach asks of us.”

Llorente stressed the importance of the game, adding, “It is a great rival we have in front of us, they are having a very good start to the season and that motivates me and everyone to try to play a good game.”

Real Madrid is a great club, they have great players and it is very difficult to beat them. I think we have competed, we have also achieved several draws, but in the end, either you go out one hundred percent and do things very, very well or it is difficult to beat them,” he added.

A former member of the Real Madrid youth academy, Llorente joined Atletico Madrid in 2019. Since then, he has racked up over 150 competitive appearances for Los Colchoneros.

Llorente, though, said he feels no sense of vindication when he performs well against his former team.

“No. In the end, it’s been many years since I left there and I’m at Atlético. Perhaps in the first years, those types of feelings and sensations can arise, but today they no longer do,” he said.

Marcos Llorente confident of Atletico Madrid’s chances ahead of the derby (Photo by FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP via Getty Images)

Llorente on Vinicius, Koke & Bellingham

The Atletico Madrid star went on to talk about other aspects of the game, including the fact that his team had one less player every time they faced Real Madrid last season.

“I have zero worries. These are things that are not in our remit, that escape our hands. We play football, the referees referee and those who have to decide decide,” he said.

Llorente, in fact, said that the return of Koke could be a real boost for Atleti. “It is always good that Koke is with us, both on the field and in the day-to-day life of the game,” he said.

“Beyond the grass. The support he gives, the advice he gives us, his experience. it is always important to have him and it is great news that he is already training with us,” he added.

Talking about the absence of Vinicius Junior and the form of Jude Bellingham, Llorente said, “Well, you have to be careful with everyone. All Real Madrid players are very good and can make a difference at any moment of the game. Bellingham is having a great start and we have to take that into account and be very focused.”

Finally, Marcos Llorente put out a message for all the Atletico Madrid fans, claiming their support ahead of this crucial encounter this weekend.

“It will be a full house as always. We don’t have to tell them anything, they know the importance of this match for Atlético, we know that they never fail, they are always supporting us and we count on them,” he said.

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