Atletico Madrid without Tiago for key Champions League clash

Modified 21 Oct 2014
Atletico Madrid
Atletico Madrid's midfielder Mario Suarez (2ndR) celebrates with teammates after scoring during their Spanish La Liga tie against RCD Espanyol at the Vicente Calderon stadium.

Madrid, Oct 21 (IANS) Atletico Madrid will be without the services of midfielder Tiago Cardoso and defender Cristian Ansaldi when they take on Swedish side Malmo in the Champions League Wednesday night.

Tiago is suffering from a muscle problem in his right leg while Ansaldi is struggling with a hamstring injury, reports Xinhua.

With one win and one defeat from their first two matches, Atletico need all three points from theoretically the weakest side in their group in order to take a big step towards assuring their place in the knockout phase of the tournament.

The Spanish club's hard-fought 1-0 win at home to Juventus means they recovered well from the opening day defeat to Olympiacos but coach Diego Simeone will be looking for a convincing display, although he will make changes to the side which battled past Espanyol Sunday.

Atletico's efficiency from set pieces was once again vital as they defeated Espanyol with both goals coming from what is a habitual source of goals for the club.

Antoine Griezmann has the chance to inject some more pace into the side while Mario Mandzukic is likely to remain in attack. Simeone highlighted the need for Griezmann to start to contribute goals to his side and with Malmo likely to sit deep in the Vicente Calderon Stadium, the Frenchman's extra pace could be a key factor.

Tiago's injury could allow Mario Suarez to push for a place in the starting 11 while Joao Miranda, who was rested Sunday, will resume his partnership with Diego Godin at the heart of the Atletico defence.

Published 21 Oct 2014
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