Atletico Madrid make just two changes from their exciting 2-2 draw with Villarreal last time out. Gimenez is dropped to the bench in favour of Felipe at centre-back, while a second debut for Griezmann leaves no room for Lemar.
Espanyol make five changes from the XI that lost 1-0 to Mallorca before the international break. A red card to Sergi Gomez means Calero gets the start at centre-back, while Vila is dropped for Pedrosa at left-back. David Lopez will not feature today which opens up space in the line-up for Morlanes, who will occupy central midfield. Either side of him on the left and right flanks, Puado and Dimata have been replaced by Melendo and Vidal – allowing Embarba to play at striker beside De Tomas.
ATLETICO MADRID SUBS: Renan Lodi, Sime Vrsaljko, Benjamin Lecomte, Rodrigo De Paul, Thomas Lemar, Hector Herrera, Jose Gimenez, Geoffrey Kondogbia, Joao Felix, Matheus Cunha.
ATLETICO MADRID XI (3-5-2): Jan Oblak; Stefan Savic, Felipe, Mario Hermoso; Kieran Trippier, Marcos Llorente, Koke, Angel Correa, Yannick Carrasco; Luis Suarez, Antoine Griezmann.
ESPANYOL SUBS: Nicolas Melamed, Miguelon, Alvaro Vadillo, Keidi Bare, Didac Vila, Lluis Recasens, Alvaro Garcia, Landry Dimata, Pere Joan, Wu Lei, Fran Merida, Loren Moron.
ESPANYOL XI (4-4-2): Diego Lopez; Adria Pedrosa, Leandro Cabrera, Fernando Calero, Oscar Gil; Oscar Melendo, Manuel Morlanes, Sergi Darder, Aleix Vidal; Adrian Embarba, Raul De Tomas.
With 15 minutes to go before kick-off, let’s take a look at how the two sides are lining up – starting with the hosts!
Atletico Madrid have a chance to retake first place with a win today, after Athletic Club’s victory yesterday took them above the capital club and into pole position. Convincing wins against Celta and Elche were met by a bizarre last-second draw with Villarreal before the international break – which preserved Simeone’s undefeated start to the year. With Antoine Griezmann expected to make his second debut today, Espanyol’s defence could be in for a tough time.
Despite the positivity of a promotion as Segunda Division winners just a year after their relegation from the top flight, the start to life back in LaLiga has been a tough one for Espanyol. Two 0-0 draws with Osasuna and Villarreal to open their campaign were met with a 1-0 loss to fellow risers Mallorca – leaving Vicente Moreno’s side in 16th place without a win, or a goal.
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