|UEFA Champions League 2014-15
| Atlético Madrid
| Bayer Leverkusen
ScheduleTuesday, 17 March 2015 at 18:45 GMT / 18:45 UK / 00:15 IST
VenueVicente Calderon (Madrid)
Next Tuesday, 17th of March 2015, a somehow uninspired Atlético Madrid will entertain a super confident Bayer Leverkusen at Vicente Calderon for the second-leg of the Last 16 stage of the UEFA Champions League. Los Colchoneros are going through a very complicated moment as they failed to win their last four official matches and because of that the upcoming clash against the Germans is a good opportunity for them to find the motivation that has, in a way, “forsaken their lands”.
Strangely enough, Atlético’s splendid win over their neighbours and rivals of Real Madrid marked the beginning of a poor streak matches for Diego Simeone’s boys, who have only won one of their last five league matches. Last weekend, Atlético Madrid didn’t manage to get anything better than a goalless draw from their visit to Cornella El-Prat. The Colchoneros’ attacking intents crashed into Espanyol’s goalkeeper Kiko Casilla’s vintage performance, although the team’s overall performance also left once again something to be desired. Atlético played the entire second-half with just ten men after Miranda’s red card just before the break. The thoughtless attitude of the Brazilian defender probably cost Atlético the three points, since it is fair to say that had they played the entire match with 11 players, they would have certainly managed to disrupt Espanyol’s defensive wall.
The upcoming match against Bayer Leverkusen will definitely be a very complicated match for Diego “El Cholo” Simeone’s boys, but they need a win in order to walk through the next stage of the tournament. For that particular clash, the Argentinean manager will not be able to rely on the services of Diego Godin and Tiago, both currently suspended, and it is also not very likely that the talented young Spanish midfielder Saul Niguez will recover in time for the match.
As for Bayer Leverkusen, the former UEFA Cup winners are currently going through a very positive moment and they will certainly want to extend such streak against a deeply fragilized Atlético Madrid. Bayer deserved their win on the first-leg match but the upcoming clash at Vicente Calderon will surely not be that easy. The German side has revealed some difficulties when playing away from home at the UEFA Champions League this season and the atmosphere they will find next Tuesday will certainly force the team to be at their best if they want to book a place in the next stage of the competition.
For that particular match, Roger Schmidt, who has had a lively verbal confrontation with Diego Simeone and Germán Burgos during the first-leg clash, will probably not be able to rely on the services of Kruse, Bender and Jedvaj, all currently sidelined due to injury.
Given both sides’ current moment, it is hard to name any favourites for next Tuesday’s match, but since they are playing at home, Atlético enjoy from a slight favouritism for the clash.
Stats: W-1 L-1 D-3
Recent Form - DDDLW
Stats: W-5 L-0 D-0
Recent Form - WWWWW
Atlético Madrid (4-4-1-1) - Moya - Juanfran - Miranda - Giménez - Ansaldi - Mario Suarez - Gabi - Turan - Griezmann - Koke - Mandzukic
Bayer Leverkusen (4-4-2) - Leno - Castro - Toprak - Papadopoulos - Wendell - Brandt - Rolfes - Hakan Çalhanoglu - Son - Bellarabi - Drmic