Atalanta vs Real Madrid Champions League preview: where to watch, predicted line-ups, team news
Wednesday, February 24, 2021
Where to watch, predicted line-ups and team news for the round of 16 first leg between Atalanta and Real Madrid.
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Atalanta host Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 on 24 February at 21:00 CET. This page will update with team news, quotes and expert analysis as kick-off approaches.
What's the story?
The UEFA Champions League's most established name takes on the young pretenders. These sides have racked up 53 campaigns in Europe's elite competition between them: Atalanta two, Madrid 51. Yet the Spanish side have struggled for consistency and have bowed out in the last 16 in the two seasons since claiming their 13th title, while vibrant Atalanta have never failed to reach the quarter-finals (from a sample of one)!
Where to watch the game on TV
Fans can find their local UEFA Champions League broadcast partner(s) here.
Latest: Atalanta 4-2 Napoli, 21/02
Where they stand: 5th in Serie A
Latest: Valladolid 0-1 Real Madrid, 20/02
Where they stand: 2nd in Liga
Atalanta: Gollini; Tolói, Romero, Djimsiti; Maehle, De Roon, Freuler, Gosens; Pessina, Iličić; Zapata
Real Madrid: Courtois; Vázquez, Varane, Nacho, Mendy; Kroos, Casemiro, Modrić; Asensio, Vinícius Junior, Díaz
Vieri Capretta, Atalanta reporter: La Dea are in great shape, as shown against Napoli – a goal machine against any opponents. It wouldn’t be a surprise if the home side score freely, but it will be key for Gian Piero Gasperini’s men to not concede, in order to put themselves at an advantage in the two-legged tie.
Joe Walker, Real Madrid reporter: Madrid have been ravaged by injury problems over the past month and could be without up to nine regulars, including inspirational leader Sergio Ramos and forwards Karim Benzema and Eden Hazard. Having said that, this is their competition and the UEFA Champions League brings out the best in this club. While they might be missing players, they have a deep squad who will back themselves to use their experience at this level to see off Atalanta.
View from the camps
Zinédine Zidane, Real Madrid coach: "We want the side to play like they have done in the Liga of late. The dynamic of the side is good and we want that to continue. We want to do our best and get to the final, of course. Every game at the moment is a ‘final’, and more so if it’s in a knockout competition. They’re a side who do very specific things. They attack well and are physically really strong, too."
Gian Piero Gasperini, Atalanta coach: "Qualification will be decided over the course of two games, so it's clear that the ideal result would be a victory. We have never met before, so only on the pitch will we be able to get a sense of Real Madrid's strength. They are one of the best teams in the world, but we have always come out of these games with a little more knowledge and quality."
In: Joakim Maehle, Boško Šutalo
Out: Fabio Depaoli, Alejandro Gómez, Johan Mojica, Cristiano Piccini
In: Iván Morante, Pablo Ramón
Out: Luka Jović, Martin Ødegaard