Atletico Madrid v Leicester - what to expect

17 March 2017 12:23

Premier League champions Leicester have been drawn against LaLiga club Atletico Madrid in the Champions League quarter-finals.

The Foxes will first visit the Vicente Calderon before welcoming Diego Simeone's men to Leicester.

Here, we look at what Craig Shakespeare's side can expect in the last eight.

Form

Atletico, the surprise Spanish champions in 2014, are not at the peak of their powers in the league and with 11 games to go they trail city rivals Real Madrid by 10 points.

Despite a difficult autumn they have won eight of their last 12 LaLiga fixtures, losing only to Barcelona, and they are unbeaten away from home since December.

In Europe, they won five of their group-stage matches and were convincing in getting past Bayer Leverkusen 4-2 on aggregate in the last 16.

Key players

Simeone boasts one of the world's most coveted forwards in France international Antoine Griezmann, who has scored 17 domestic goals this season and another four in the Champions League.

Atletico's frontline also includes former Liverpool and Chelsea striker Fernando Torres, a seasoned continental campaigner, and French hotshot Kevin Gameiro, a key asset on all fronts this term.

The Rojiblancos are more than just an attacking force, though, and a rearguard comprising Diego Godin, Filipe Luis and Juanfran makes trips to the Calderon arduous and often unprofitable.

European record

Atletico have reached the final twice in the last three years, losing to their Madrid foes Real on both occasions. They warmed up for their tilts at the top prize with Europa League trophies in 2010 and 2012. Indeed, t hey have not been absent from European competition since before 2007-08.

They have enjoyed recent success against English clubs, beating Liverpool and Fulham in the Europa League semi-finals and final respectively in 2010. However, they were thumped 4-0 by Chelsea in October 2009, during the Champions League group stages.

Leicester have done battle with the 'Mattress Makers' before. Atletico were able to end the Foxes' UEFA Cup journey at the earliest opportunity in 1997, with Juninho (twice), Christian Vieri and Kiko doing the damage across a 4-1 aggregate victory in the first round. Ian Marshall scored for Leicester.

Source: PA


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