Atletico Madrid get their La Liga season underway on Sunday, as they host Getafe at Wanda Metropolitano.
Atletico will be aiming to go one step further this season, having finished runners up last season to unstoppable champions Barcelona. The departures of Antoine Griezmann and Rodri will be tough, but exciting new arrivals such as Joao Felix will certainly benefit Los Colchoneros.
Meanwhile, Getafe come into the new season having been the surprise package of the season just gone. The Madrid club finished fifth and secured their berth in the Europa League group stage, recording their best ever finish in the Spanish top flight as well as European football.
Here's our preview of Sunday's La Liga clash.
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Sunday 18 August|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||20:00 (BST)|
|Where Is it Played?||Wanda Metropolitano|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||FuboTV - Free Trial|
|Referee?||Guillermo Cuadra Fernández|
Where to Buy Tickets
Tickets for the game are, as ever, available on both teams' official club websites, though membership is required in order to purchase. In terms of resale, both teams provide the option to make season tickets available for others to use, if a supporter is unable to attend the game themselves.
Atletico Madrid continue to be without full back Sime Vrsalkjko, who has been sidelined since January following knee surgery. Angel Correa is also unavailable for Sunday, as he serves a one-match suspension after picking up a red card at the end of last season.
However, Atletico's biggest absence will be striker Diego Costa, who is serving the end of an eight match suspension. Costa was handed two four-match bans by the Spanish Football Federation last season, after he verbally abused the referee in Atletico's 2-0 defeat to Barcelona.
Getafe have no fresh injury concerns, with their only absentee being Vitorino Antunes. The left back has been out injured with a cruciate ligament rupture since January, but is set to return in mid-October.
|Atletico Madrid||Oblak; Trippier, Savic, Gimenez, Lodi; Felix, Saul, Koke, Lemar; Morata, Kalinic.|
|Getafe||Soria; Suarez, Bruno, Cabrera, Cucurella; Nyom, Maksimovic, Arambarri, Alejo; Mata, Molina.|
Head to Head Record
Atletico Madrid and Getafe have met 30 times before, with Atletico winning 19 of those meetings. Getafe have managed just four wins over their Madrid neighbours, last emerging victorious back in November 2011.
Last time out was at the start of the year in January, as Atletico recorded a routine win. Goals from Griezmann and Saul Niguez gave Los Colchoneros a 2-0 win at the Metropolitano, in a game which saw Getafe end the game with nine men after two red cards in the dying minutes.
Atletico's record against Getafe is remarkably dominant, having won the last ten consecutive games. Los Rojiblancos are unbeaten in their last 15 meetings, scoring an astounding 30 goals and not conceding a single goal - making it an incredible 15 consecutive clean sheets.
Atletico won all six of their pre-season friendlies, including a hard fought win over Juventus and an emphatic victory over rivals Real Madrid. Los Rojiblancos go into the new season full of confidence, defeating an array of opponents in their preparations for the new season.
Getafe also had a successful pre-season, going unbeaten in their six games. After three stalemates and a narrow win over Italian side Crotone, Jose Bordalas' side ended their preparations with an impressive win over Champions League entrants Atalanta.
|Atletico Madrid 2-1 Juventus (10/8)||Getafe 4-1 Atalanta (10/8)|
|Atletico San Luis 1-2 Atletico Madrid (3/8)||RCD Mallorca 0-0 Getafe (7/8)|
|MLS All-Stars 0-3 Atletico Madrid (1/8)||Getafe 1-0 Crotone (2/8)|
|Real Madrid 3-7 Atletico Madrid (27/7)||Getafe 1-1 Albacete (31/7)|
|Guadalajara 0-0 Atletico Madrid (4-5 on Pens) (24/7)||Sporting Gijon 1-1 Getafe (27/7)|
It's certain to be an entertaining game on Sunday, as last season's second place and fifth place sides face off to open the season. It will be interesting to see how Atletico cope without Griezmann, and eyes will be on Getafe to see if they can continue their form from last season.
However, the hosts' record is so dominant and so convincing that it's hard to look past them to win. Atletico should open the season with a strong win, as they look to send a statement out to the rest of Spain that they're ready to once again compete for the title.