Dermot Corrigan's La Liga Preview: Atletico's Class To Show vs Sociedad


Atletico Madrid returned to third place in the table thanks to Saturday’s 2-0 win at struggling Cordoba, with Antoine Griezmann looking especially sharp as he netted the opener as his side won away from home for the first time since January.

Griezmann looks set to keep his starting spot against his former team, but Mario Mandzukic is out with an ankle problem so Fernando Torres -- who scored as Atletico won their last home game 2-0 against Getafe before the international break -- looks sure to start.

Elsewhere Diego Godin is to be rested due to a hamstring issue, while Arda Turan looks set to return in midfield. Juanfran’s suspension means that one of out of favour pair Guilherme Siqueira or Christian Ansaldi will come in at left-back, with Jesus Gamez switching across.

Real Sociedad were slightly fortunate to get a 1-1 draw at Malaga on Saturday night, but David Moyes’ team showed good fighting spirit, and have now taken 10 points from their last 12 games. The former Everton and Manchester United coach has now settled well at the Basque club, with their excellent recent form maintaining an outside chance of seventh spot and a Europa League place next season.

La Real beat Atletico 2-1 in November [before Moyes time] but their chances of a double are not helped by both centre-halves Inigo Martinez and Jon Ansotegi picking up fifth bookings of the season at Malaga. Fit-again Mikel Gonzalez and Gorka Elustondo look set to come in. Carlos Vela’s recovery from his knee problem hit a hitch last week, but he could be ready to return too.

Atletico look to be gearing back up into form, and are very strong at home. Moyes' side's away displays have improved markedly, but getting a result at the Calderon is probably too big an ask.

Predicted result: Atletico Madrid 1-0 Real Sociedad at 5.40

Best bet: Total goals under 2.5 at 1.90