7 December 2019
Villarreal will try to find a way out of a severe crisis when they take on Atletico Madrid at the Estadio de la Ceramica this weekend.
Winless in their last five La Liga (LL) outings (D1, L4), the hosts are enduring the most challenging period since the beginning of the season. All of their defeats during the above run have seen them score precisely one goal per match and concede two or more. Villarreal’s dip in form has had a negative influence on their recent home performances too, as they’ve gone from three consecutive LL home wins to back-to-back games without a victory (D1, L1). But, the Yellow Submarine’s devastating attacking firepower has netted 2+ match goals in five of seven league home games, which is something only five Spanish teams have managed so far. Also, Javier Calleja’s side can draw inspiration from their impressive LL home H2H record against Atletico over the past few years. They have won three straight such fixtures before being held to a 1-1 draw last season.
Meanwhile, the visitors have played out four successive LL away draws ahead of this clash, with three of the last coming by the exact 1-1 scoreline. Undoubtedly the toughest away side in Spain’s top-tier, Los Colchoners remain the only team whose all seven LL road trips featured under 2.5 goals. Additionally, only three sides have netted fewer away goals than Atletico (6) so far, with Diego Simeone’s men scoring one goal or less in all but one of their LL trips this season. Also, the last time that the Madrid giants managed to score over 1.5 match goals in LL away H2H with Villarreal dates back to 2008. Unsurprisingly, Atletico’s main strength remains an airtight defense that has shipped just five away goals this term – league’s joint-best record.
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