Atletico Madrid will be looking to bounce back from successive defeats in La Liga when they continue their title defense against Sevilla at Estadio Ramon on Saturday night.


With Real Madrid unseemingly able to catch in La Liga this season, Sevilla are the capital club’s closest challengers at the moment, with Julen Lopetegui’s side picking up 34 points from their 16 matches to occupy second position, five points clear of fifth-placed Real Sociedad and eight off the summit. They have won four of their last five domestic matches, including victories over Cordoba and Andratx in the Copa del Rey. Sevilla has beaten Villarreal and Athletic Bilbao 1-0 since losing at Real Madrid, and they are currently five points clear of fourth-placed Atletico ahead of this weekend’s contest. Sevilla actually boasts the top defensive record in the 2021-22 La Liga season, conceding just 11 times thus far. Sevilla has not finished higher than fourth in La Liga since 2009 but could prove to be Real Madrid’s main title rivals this term, as Atletico and Barcelona are both having their problems. Julen Lopetegui will be without the services of Erik Lamela, Youssef En-Nesyri, Jesus Navas, and Suso on Saturday through injury, while Brazilian midfielder Fernando is suspended.


Atletico Madrid entered last weekend’s Madrid derby off the back of a shock home defeat to Mallorca, but they were unable to return to winning ways at Bernabeu, as goals from Karim Benzema and Marco Asensio secured all three points for Carlo Ancelotti’s side, who will be difficult to stop this term. The reigning Spanish champions have built much of their recent success on an excellent defensive record, but they have conceded 18 times in 16 games this term, which is far from the best record in La Liga this season. Diego Simeone’s side has not managed a single clean sheet so far away from home this season. Atletico Madrid has only picked up one win in their last five visits to Sevilla. Defenders Stefan Savic and Sime Vrsaljko remain unavailable for selection. Striker Antoine Griezmann has also been ruled out for the remainder of the year with a thigh injury, so Luis Suarez could return to the starting XI, potentially joining Matheus Cunha in attack.