Soccer Spain LaLiga Prediction
Villarreal vs Atl. Madrid - Match Preview
⚽ 4 June 2023 - 16:30 GMT +0
Villarreal closes out their 2022/23 La Liga (LL) campaign with nothing riding on the season finale, having wrapped up their fourth fifth-placed finish in the last seven seasons. Quique Setién’s men are fully deserving of their UEFA Europa League qualification for next season, having picked up 16 points from a possible 18 prior to last weekend’s loss at Rayo Vallecano.
The Estadio de la Cerámica faithful have seen the best of the Yellow Submarine during that run, with four of those wins coming in succession at home. Making it five in a row here against Atlético Madrid would be truly special as it would see Villarreal become only the third team in LL history to do the league double over both of the Madrid giants in Atlético and Real in the same season!
Atlético have some added motivation to stop that from happening as they will snatch second place from their city rivals should they win on the final day and Real Madrid fail to do so against Athletic Bilbao. Otherwise, it’ll be back-to-back third-placed finishes for Atlético, who have demonstrated their quality by suffering defeat only twice in their last 21 league outings (W15, D4).
The Mattress Makers might still get a nervy night’s sleep despite that impressive form, as both of those defeats have come in their last four away matches (W1, D1). Manager Diego Simeone may well be especially restless: his 33% win ratio against Villarreal in LL is his worst among teams he’s faced ten or more times other than Barcelona (9%) and Real Madrid (22%) in the division.
📋 Players to watch: It’s been a breakthrough season for Villarreal’s 21-year-old LL top scorer Nicolas Jackson, who was the division’s player of the month for May and will be looking to cap off the campaign in style after netting nine of his last ten goals at home. Meanwhile, Atlético’s Antoine Griezmann comes into this fixture having scored in back-to-back league games for the first time since rejoining the club in 2021.
⚡ Hot streak: Atlético has gone 42 LL matches without a 0-0 draw, the second-longest such run of all current top-flight teams after Elche.
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