Atlético Madrid vs. Almería: La Liga Soccer Odds, Preview, Prediction & Pick

Kevin Stott

Friday, February 20, 2015 4:06 PM GMT

Almería face an angry Atlético Madrid side coming off an embarrassing La Liga loss to Celta Vigo. With such high odds on the home favorite, is there a wise approach to this game Saturday?

Odds Overview
Atlético Madrid vs. Almería, Saturday 19:00 (beIN Sports en Español, beIN SPORTS CONNECT (US); Sky Sports 5/HD, NOW TV, Sky Go, Sky Go Extra (UK), 11 a.m. ET/8 a.m. PT): With both Real Madrid and Barcelona ahead of them in the La Liga standings, third-place Atlético Madrid (16-2-5, 47 GF-22 GA) needs to win all matches from this point on against teams from the bottom half of the league, and its opponent at Vicente Calderon Stadium on Saturday in this Week 22 fixture, 16th-place Almería (6-5-12, 22 GF-36 GA) qualifies as just that.

Soccer odds makers have host Atlético Madrid big favorites (-500, bet365) in the Three-Way (Winner) marketplace with the guests Almería lined at +1400 (140/1) and the Draw at +550. The Total Goals in this match ranges from 2½ (Over -153, 365) to 3 (Under -145, Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) while the Both Teams To Score odds have the No priced at -200 and the Yes at +150 (William Hill). So, can a clean sheet from the hosts Atlético Madrid and GK Miguel Moya almost be expected this weekend? Logic says yes. And a prop which could actually offer the best value in this particular game going in with that Clean Sheet Philosophy for the hosts? Atlético Madrid To Win To Nil -129 (BetVictor). Wonderful. Just what we desired there. With one of the best defenses is Europe, Moya in goal and that proverbial chip on their red-and-white-clad shoulders, Atlético Madrid should definitely be able to shut out the visitors from Andalusia.

 

UD Almería
Almería (5-1-6, 13 GF-19 GA) sits just 4 points from the dreaded Relegation Zone in Spain’s top flight of football with 23 points, but Los Rojiblancos and manager Juan Ignacio Martinez have actually played pretty well away from their Andalucian home so far this season. Almería has 5 of its 6 wins on the Road, has earned 16 of its 23 points and has scored 13 of its 22 goals on the Road. UDA is an enigma, but all this club cares about right now is staying up with the Big Boys. But this match probably won’t be much fun for Almería which catches Atlético Madrid coming off an unexpected loss and hungry to wash that memory from their collective minds. In their last league game, Almería tied at home (2-2) with Real Sociedad as Verza (José Antonio García Rabasco) and Tomer Hemed (+500 Anytime Goalscorer, bet365) scored for the hosts. But this team just isn’t productive enough offensively and after Hemed (7 goals), Edgar (4 goals) and Verza (3 goals), the goal scorers are few and far between for this side which has scored less totals goals (22) than Barcelona’s Lionel Messi (26). Here against Atlético Madrid—another team with the nickname Los Rojiblancos—Almería will most likely find it very hard to try to get shots on Atlético  GK Moya and the total number of quality ones may end up being 3 or less. The Struggle is always a struggle.

 

Atlético Madrid
Atlético Madrid (10-1-1 Home, 31 GF-9 GA) is always a tough side to face here at home at Vicente Calderon Stadium, but with a bee in their bonnets after losing and being blanked by Celta Vigo, look out man. Los Rojiblancos (50 points) start the weekend out 7 points back of La Liga leaders Real Madrid (57 points) and can ill afford weak outings in league play like the last one. Atlético and head coach Diego Simeone will also have a Wednesday (Feb. 25) UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Knockout Stage Leg 1 game against Bayer Leverkusen (FS2, 2:45 p.m. ET/11:45 a.m. PT) in Leverkusen, Germany in mind heading into this game in Madrid on Saturday, and lucky for the hosts, Almería isn’t one of the stronger teams in BBVA. Atlético will look for regulars Mario Mandžukic (-150 Anytime Goalscorer, bet365), Antoine Griezmann (-110), Sekou Keita (+110), Fernando Torres (-110), Raul Garcia (+160), Koke (+275), Arda Turan (+275) and Diego Godin (+275) for some scoring in this fixture, and no doubt the fiery Simeone won’t make the same mistakes with his starting XI this coming week he did against mini-nemesis Celta Vigo. Expect Atlético Madrid to come out very aggressively in search of that first goal and then relax a little bit and then score one or two more goals for the fans after feeling a little better about themselves. Stress stifles.

 

Best Betting Approaches and Trends
These two teams haven’t played much in The Past and they won’t play much in The Future if Almería ends up getting relegated. In 4 overall meetings, all here in league play, the series is a dead even 2-0-2 with both teams scoring 8 goals and winning twice on their home soil. Atlético Madrid won the two meetings here at Home and is 2-0-0 (6 GF-2 GA) against Almería at Vicente Calderon Stadium, but all four games were played between 1979 and 1981 (1979/1980 and 1980/1981 seasons) when almost all of these players weren’t even A Twinkle in Their Pappy’s Eyes. Meaningless. Trends that are not your friends. Anyway, the better team will be motivated to win here after its last stinker and with one of the best clubs, the most supportive fans and one of the top managers in the game, Atlético should roll to a clean sheet victory and stay firmly in third place when all of the dust clears, so add them to your soccer picks this weekend.


PREDICTED FINAL: Atlético Madrid 3 Almería 0

FREE LA LIGA PICKS: Atlético Madrid -1½ -140, Atlético To Win To Nil -129 (BetVictor)

ANYTIME GOALSCORER PICK: Antoine Griezmann -110 (bet365)

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