Bayer Leverkusen vs Atletico Madrid
Competition: UEFA Champions League
Date: 21 February 2017
Kick-off: 20:45 CET
Along with Barcelona, Atletico Madrid were probably the strongest competitors through the group stages as they lost just one game, winning the rest, but all that will mean nothing as they have to travel to a tough fixture in Germany to begin their knockout stages against Bayer Leverkusen.
Leverkusen were in a battle for top spot in their group all the way to the final whistle as Monaco swooped in to take the top spot by just a single point. And for that, Leverkusen can feel quite hard done by for although they drew four games, they went through undefeated with two wins to round off their six games in the group. Leverkusen also had the best goal difference as they scored eight and conceded half that amount. However, that again is all in the past and although it has set them up as second place in the draw, they will feel they have decent chance as although Atletico were a powerhouse in the group stages they are not one of the traditional big boys of the Champions League.
Atletico took full advantage of a group that really only had one threat in Bayern Munich when they dominated group D, winning five and losing just one which was away to the German side. Madrid showed however they know how to deal with German sides when they dealt with a strong Munich side on their home ground, but things undoubtedly be difficult away from home when they face Leverkusen. They will also need a boost in the Champions League as domestically it seems things are running away from them as Barcelona and Real Madrid push their advantage further and further in La Liga.
Bayer Leverkusen vs Atletico Madrid: Group stage form
Atletico need to be praised for their work in the group stages as they opened their winning ways with a victory against Munich, and then lost 1-0 to them at the end, winning everything else.
For Leverkusen, things could have been very different if they managed to push for wins rather than sit on draws as four draws out of six is not an impressive showing and proves a lack of killer instinct.
Bayer Leverkusen vs Atletico Madrid: Prediction
Bayer will be happy with starting at home in this clash as Madrid have shown some frailty away from home, but in all reality, Atletico are more passionate in their approach this season and will still push for the win where Bayer would probably take a draw even at home. Expect it to be close, a draw perhaps, but even a 1-0 home win.
Bayer Leverkusen vs Atletico Madrid: Tips
This game could be a bit of a slog as one team looks to frustrate while the other goes for the win, an exciting draw seems to be on the cards.