March 18, 2018

Atletico's Partey bullish ahead of Barcelona trip

04 March 2018, 11:21 | Randolph Howard

Antoine Griezmann in top form ahead of Barcelona clash

Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez

It is also the 325th he has scored at Camp Nou. And that's not all.

Barcelona Boss is ready for the upcoming clash against Atletico Madrid considering it as another major final.

Beat Barca and Atletico will need to make up just two more points in the remaining 11 fixtures.

Filipe Luis expects Antoine Griezmann to turn down transfer offers from Barcelona and Manchester United.

Gimenez expectedly knows Suarez but the craftiness of the Barcelona forward can still make way for him in the tightest of positions.

Gimenez's alliance with skipper and fellow Uruguay global Diego Godin at centre-back is formidable and Atleti have only been breached 11 times in 26 top-flight matches. His effect on fellow strikers has been huge.

In establishing Atletico as one of Europe's most consistent sides of the current era, Simeone won a reputation as a defensive master leading a team who would give opponents nothing. The mesmeric Argentina star will no doubt want to produce his best form as he looks to extend his advantage in the race for the Pichichi Trophy, while also cementing Barca's lead at the top. Many things can happen during a game.

Coutinho comes in and Dembele stays on the bench. Jan Oblak got a fingertip to it, but could not keep it out.

TODAY'S FORECAST: Snow, high near 32
While not almost as intense looking as our current storm, this one could bring us more widespread snow with some rain mixing in. Hurricane-force wind warnings up just offshore, coastal flood warnings and high wind warnings are up as well.

The gap to the top might be slightly bigger this time around but, in a coincidence to excite their fans, Atleti face Barca with 61 points from 26 games.

Messi usually enjoys himself against Atletico.

Atletico Madrid's Argentine coach Diego Simeone admits that there is "no strategy" that could potentially nullify the threat of Barcelona's talismanic number 10 Lionel Messi, however he feels that his side can control the game in a way that limited Messi's influence.

The omens appear undecided.

Given a draw would surely be enough to satisfy Barcelona, it would be a fearless move from its coach Ernesto Valverde to field the full "Fabulous Four" this weekend. But Simeone has never beaten Barca in the league in 12 attempts.

Both teams adopt slightly different versions of the 4-4-2, with Atletico playing Partey and Saul in the centre of midfield, allowing Koke to play from the left and offering defensive cover, while Angel Correa does the same from the right.

Diego Godin will do his best to get under the skin of compatriot Luis Suarez.

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