Valencia welcomes Atalanta
Valencia welcomes Atalanta at the Estadio Mestalla in a second leg from the Champions League 1/8-finals. After suffering a 1-4 defeat in the first game at the Mestalla, Valencia’s chances do not look very big here. Let’s preview this fixture.
Two weeks ago at the San Siro Atalanta enjoyed one of the best nights in their history. La Dea played their first ever game in the Champions League knockout phase and crushed Valencia with 4-1. After just 62 minutes of playing the Italians already had a clear four goals lead.
Hans Hateboer and Josip Ilicic opened the score for Atalanta in the first half, while Remo Freuler and Hans Hateboer again scored in the beginning of the second half. In the 66th minute Denis Cheryshev scored a goal which kept some chances for Valencia, but there’s no doubt about this – for the Spanish team it’s going to be extremely hard to survive after such a defeat in the first game.
Most probably even Valencia’s manager Albert Celades can’t really explain what happened to his team on February 19. Valencia are a club with a much bigger European experience than Atalanta, but the Italians dominated the game and made a very strong step towards the 1/4-finals. Now the question is – can they finish the job?
Atalanta’s manager Gian Piero Gasperini and his players are aware that even one away goal at the Mestalla could make Valencia’s task pretty much impossible. We think that La Dea will try to score, but Atalanta will be much more focused on defending on Tuesday. Let’s see if Valencia’s attack is going to be strong enough to hurt the Italians.
Although the tie between Valencia and Atalanta looks already decided in favour of the visitors, we think we must wait and see how the Spanish side will respond to this challenge. We have seen all kinds of miracles in the Champions League before.