Our Spanish expert argues there could be value in backing Atletico this evening despite the bookmakers expecting a dominant Catalan performance
Furthermore Diego Simeone's men come into the Champions League quarter-final first leg clash having won at Athletic Bilbao at the weekend, something that neither Barca nor Real Madrid have managed so far.
The Rojiblancos have shown themselves to be an extremely competitive unit yet are priced at 5/1 (6.00) by Paddy Power to claim a win tonight. They are also made 2/1 (3.00) underdogs by the bookmakers to qualify over the course of two legs.
For a team which is in such good form, that seems a little generous although in theory Barcelona remain a formidable prospect at home.
Nevertheless, wise punters will look for a way to back Atleti this evening, given that there seems to be some real value around in certain markets.
Indeed in the handicap market Atletico +1 at 6/4 (2.50) looks like a superb option, given that this bet has paid out in each of the three games that the two sides have contested so far this season.
More adventurous punters might be tempted by the price of 4/1 (5.00) for Atletico Draw No Bet, which if analysed purely in a factual way looks like a decent value and will see your stake returned if the match ends all square.
Atletico are, after all, top of the Primera Division and facing a side they have not lost to during the current campaign.
It could be in the goalscorers market where the best value bet for the game lies though, backing Koke to get on the scoresheet at anytime for the underdogs at 6/1 (7.00) could be worthy of serious consideration.
The Spanish international midfielder is in the form of his life and has scored some big goals so far this season, including in the Madrid derby and in Bilbao. He takes free kicks and could offer some value in the goalscorer market.
|Koke to score at any time at 6/1 (7.00) 0.5pt stake with Paddy Power|
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Phil Kitromilides is a sports journalist and TV presenter in Madrid