Valencia vs Atletico Madrid 21/08/18
21 August 2018
Two sides that have been quite active on the transfer market, securing some significant signings, will face off against each other at the Estadio de Mestalla in the opening fixture of 2018-2019 La Liga campaign, where Valencia will host Atletico Madrid. After an extraordinary season where they managed to return to the Champions League football, the Bats have pulled off some major transfers this summer, trying to remain competitive on all fronts. Apart from Mouctar Diakhaby, who arrived from Lyon, Denis Cheryshev, Daniel Wass, Kevin Gameiro, and Michy Batshuayi all arrived at Mestalla, while Simone Zaza left the club to join Torino. However, the Oranges are yet to find the right rhythm and a desirable form as they have only managed to secure three wins out of six warm-up games they have played while playing out two draws and recording one loss in the process. On the other hand, following the arrivals of Gelson Martins, Rodri, and Thomas Lemar, Los Colchoneros have destroyed the arch-rivals Real Madrid in the European Super Cup, defeating them by four goals to two after extra time, and Diego Simeone has every reason to aim high this season judging his team’s performance in that match. Before taking part in the Super Cup, Los Rojiblancos have also featured in the International Champions Cup, where they recorded two losses and a win, although it’s fair to say they have played without almost entire starting eleven.
Francis Coquelin, who suffered a severe Achilles tendon injury won’t be available for the encounter, as well as, Kevin Gameiro, who is yet to enter full training. As for the visitors, Lucas Hernandez will be the only absence, as he has to serve a one-match suspension back from last season.