Atletico Madrid v Real Madrid – Vicente Calderon Stadium at 19:45 live on ITV1

The Champions League is back this week as it enters the Quarter Final stage and what a cracking 4 games we have in store. Our first Asian Handicap preview is arguably the tie of the round as last years finalist meet again for only the second time in the competition. This will be the 7th Derby madrileno of the season with the 8th coming next weekend in the 2nd leg.

It’s Atletico who lead the head to head meetings this season, with 4 wins and 2 draws before tonight, winning the Super Cup, knocking Real out of the Copa Del Ray and taking 6 points from them in the league. Apart from the Super cup, the league and cup wins haven’t really equated to much for Atleti however.

Rojiblancos were knocked out of the cup at the quarter final stage and sit 7 points behind Real in 3rd place in La Liga. They are a further 2 points behind Barcelona who top the table with just 7 matches to play, so unless their is some sort of miracle, Simeone won’t be regaining the title this campaign.

Real Madrid come into the 1st leg on the back of 3 straight La Liga wins, scoring 14 and conceding just once in the process. Prior to this though, they lost their first Champions League match in eight to Schalke 4-3 at the Bernabeu and only managed one win in four domestically, L2 D1, in March. They are still in the title race though just 2 points behind Barcelona.

Los Blancos have lost 3 of their last 5 domestic matches away from home however and seem to be making tough work when on the road. Real will certainly not find it easy at the Vicente Calderon Stadium with Athleti only losing one league match there all season, W13 D2. Colchoneros have also not lost at home in the UCL this season, winning 4 from 4 without conceding a goal and have the best defensive record from teams left in the competition, leaking just 4 goals in their 8 matches.

Based on their La Liga statistics, especially against the top sides, Over 2.5 goals at 2.25 represent good value but with Atletico’s defence being as strong as it has in this year Champions League, I’m reluctant to back it. The value lies with Atletico Madrid, priced up at 2.9 to win with their head to head record and Real’s patchy recent away form, the price looks juicy to me.

Many may not want to risk backing Atleti to win so backing them off scratch (Draw Not Bet) at 2.05 may be a popular bet but I have more confidence in Diego Simeone’s side than that and will back them -0.25.

Asian Handicap Recommendation: Atletico Madrid -0.25 @ 2.43

Prices correct at time of writing.

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