To Atalanta it has the dubious honor of being the Italian team that has spent the most time in the A series (59 years) without earning a scudetto, but he is in the moment of his life (follow the game live on AS.com). Two seasons ago he finished third, his best historical classification, and he repeated the last position, in which he touched one hundred goals (98 signed), an unbroken barrier in the last seventy years of Calcium. So the Madrid is summoned to a shooting in times of ammunition shortage. As he approaches the area he loses his faculties. In this Champions League he is second in passing success, third in possession, fifth in shots and twelfth in goals. The opposite door knocks him out and the only shock treatment is on the market. Nevertheless, in the league has known how to get up with four consecutive wins.
Against him, it must also be pointed out that nothing has changed in Valladolid here. He has not recovered any of his nine injured (Carvajal, Odriozola, Ramos, Militao, Marcelo, Valverde, Hazard, Benzema and Rodrygo) and he once again conceals his drama with six players from the subsidiary (Altube, Chust, Gutiérrez, Arribas, Blanco and Hugo Duro). The peacocks almost already outnumber zidanes. So the plan is to buy time, survive the Atalanta point of madness and rebuild the team in three weeks with the main ones. They only remain healthy ten field players, those who played in Zorrilla starting more Isco. The last minutes of the malagueño were the most drinkable in time and could take the place away from Vinicius, dwarfed after his generous portion of the bench, although it does not seem likely. The rest consists of put what there is.
The Gasperini method
The Atalanta has more danger what a record. He made his debut in a Champions League last season and was planted in the Lisbon bubble of quarters. There, the PSG traced him back with two goals in the discount. In this he spent the first phase winning all the away games and none at home. In Bergamo they received a 0-5 from Liverpool and at Anfield they won 0-2. This roller coaster tore Valencia to pieces last year.
The take-off pattern is Gian Piero Gasperini, who with nine years was already in the infantile of the Juventus and as a club ball boy. He went up almost every floor, but did not reach the attic. Eleven games played in bianconero before embarking on a long tour of a good number of modest teams. At the end of his career, he began directing in the lower categories of Juve without the pretense of continuing to live off football: “Nobody cared about my job.” In fact, He completed his training as a financial advisor until he was called by Crotone, from Series C: “I accepted against the opinion of my wife, who saw it as reckless, but I had to try.”
Then he was promoted, he arrived at Inter, they threw him into the fifth game (“He ruined everything, he was always complaining about the players,” said President Moratti) and five years ago he brought his contradictory system to Atalanta. “When I started they accused me of promoting catenaccio for putting three centrals. “Wrong theory. Atalanta have been Italy’s highest-scoring team in the previous two seasons. Guardiola, who invited him to continue his training sessions in Barcelona, said that he would face him was visiting the dentist: “The metaphor is perfect. You have to upset your rival,” Gasperini acknowledged. And eight years ago Mourinho, then Inter coach, confirmed it after a match against his Genoa: “He is the toughest technician I ever faced. I changed the drawing five times and all five he countered me. It was a cat and dog fight “.
Madrid will face a team with three centrals, two very long wingers (the starting right, Hateboer, is injured and they have signed the Danish Maehle to replace him), two positional midfielders and three attackers. It can be a playmaker and two strikers or vice versa. Its artillery is Colombian. Duvan Zapata has scored 13 goals and former Sevilla player Luis Muriel, substitute in half the games, 17. The third cannon is the Slovenian left-hander Ilicic, a 33-year-old veteran who has suffered two injuries this season but scored 21 goals last season, cfour of them to Valencia in Mestalla. Gasperini likes the ball, overcrowding the area (up to seven or eight players join the attack), pressing up, stealing early and alternating his goalkeepers. 42 of his 53 goals in Serie A are the product of open game (no other team comes close) and only eight set pieces or counterattack. In addition, Atalanta shoots 16 times per game and in 15 of their 33 matches this year they have scored three or more goals. With that plan, so contrary to the country where he lives, he has lost only one of his last twenty games. So if Madrid looks confidently at its past, it will be shooting itself in the foot.