He Athletic closed 2020 with an agonizing victory against Getafe and opens this year against Alaves, a rival who always poses a battle (follow the game live on AS.com). It is true that has not lost in Vitoria since December 2002. Since then he has played there five times with a win, a draw, two wins in a row and another draw. But only one clear win: 0-4, two seasons ago. The popular saying ensures that in stadiums like Mendizorroza is where the leagues are won, although Cholo and his group are oblivious to it and follow the guidelines from match to match.
This is how an Atlético arrives lost Costa, still without Trippier —Although he has the precaution of FIFA to be able to play— and now it is pending of the sky. Snow and ice condition the crash. Another stumbling block in that fight for the title. But Cholo likes challenges and if there is cold, snow and ice, he has to adapt. Atlético must also defeat general winter.
He Alaves has played eight home games, with two wins, four draws and two losses. Their numbers are scarce, both in the scoring facet (six) and in the defense (seven). Only Betis and Elche won there. Barça and Real Sociedad, for example, took a point. The rojiblancos are warned of the difficulties to score a goal against Pacheco and the defensive approach that, in theory, Machín will mount, who loses one of the historical ones, Pina, but has Battaglia. An Alavés that continues with some of the same old ones, like Manu Garcia at the helm. And an exrojiblanco, Lucas Pérez, willing to sour Atlético's afternoon. He already did it on occasion.
Snow can upset plans
Simeone rehearsed with an almost usual eleven, with Giménez instead of the sanctioned Savic (imperial in this course) and with Strap by João Félix. The Portuguese will ask the Three Wise Men to give him back the spark of the beginning of the season. Cholo could insist with the long lanes (Vrsaljko and Carrasco) and with Lemar, together with Koke and Llorente, who returns to what was his home like a star. Although the weather conditions and the field can influence. Maybe it is not a favorable terrain for Lemar and it is for footballers like Saúl or Kondogbia. We'll see if time changes Cholo's plans. Suárez will play safe. Against Getafe he caught a ball and gave his team three points. Now it's about repeating. Considering what has been seen, a goal from the Uruguayan could decide a clash for the brave.