Since Atletico Madrid last won the Spanish title in 2014, the average number of points needed to win La Liga has been 86. Even if Monday night’s 2-2 draw at home to Celta Vigo was disappointing, especially conceding such a late equaliser, it’s a very good bet that with 51 points in the bag Atleti are, at most, 12 wins away from what would be only their third Spanish title win in 44 years. Heady times.
In fact, if you take into account Atleti have games in hand on Barcelona, Real Madrid and Sevilla FC, perhaps it’s as few as eight or nine wins which will give Diego Simeone and his band of brothers that golden champion feeling.
But hold on a minute. The fixture list has obstacles for Los Rojiblancos. The champions-elect must try to win away in some of Spain’s most testing places — at Sevilla, at Villarreal, at Athletic Bilbao, at Barcelona, at Levante and at Real Betis.
The “Amen Corner” of Atleti’s title charge, if I may call it that in honour of them trying to “Master” Spain, runs like this: away to Granada, away to Levante, at home to Levante four days later, away to Villarreal, at home to Madrid, at home to Athletic, away to Getafe, at home to Alaves, away to Sevilla and then away to Betis.
In the midst of all that there are Champions League tests against a tougher, revived Chelsea under new manager Thomas Tuchel. Continue reading
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