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Real Madrid VS Athletic Club Final – LIVE Football Reddit Score 3 Feb 2022

Real Madrid VS Athletic Club Final – LIVE Football Reddit Score 3 Feb 2022

Real Madrid will square off against La Liga rivals Athletic Bilbao in the quarter-finals of the 2021/22 Copa del Rey on Thursday night at San Mames. Real Madrid are enjoying a solid season as they sit atop the La Liga standings while they have already won the Supercopa de Espana. Carlo Ancelotti’s side will be hoping to go all the way in the cup competition as well. Los Blancos got past Alcoyano in the Round of 32 before they were made to work hard by Elche in the Round of 16. They are on a six-game unbeaten run in all competitions and will be hoping to keep it intact.

Athletic Bilbao, meanwhile, eased past lower league outfit Atletico Mancha in the Round of 32 and then pulled off an impressive 3-2 win over Barcelona in the last stage to set up a meeting with Real Madrid. Marcelino’s men have lost just one of their previous seven games in all competitions, although it did come against their Thursday’s opponents in the final of the Spanish Supercup last month. In fact, Los Leones have been beaten three times in three games in all competitions by Real Madrid since December. The Basque outfit will be hoping to end that streak and bag a victory to progress to the Last Four stage of the Copa del Rey.

Dani Garcia and Mikel Vesga will be in charge of holding down the fort in the middle of the park for Athletic Club, where they will look to try and stifle the influence of their counterparts, Toni Kroos and Luka Modric. The threat from the wide areas ought to come from captain Muniain and young Nico Williams, who will try to exploit any space left by the Real Madrid full-backs. Raul Garcia and Inaki Williams ought to pair up in attack, although Marcelino might opt to start with Oihan Sancet if he prefers to add more mobility in the final third.

Real Madrid have been dealt a major blow in the lead-up to the contest as star striker Karim Benzema has been ruled out with an injury. His compatriot Ferland Mendy also misses out while Marcelo is suspended for the match. The Brazilian contingent of Casemiro, Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo have returned in time from national team duty to train with the game and could play a part on Thursday. Carlo Ancelotti will field his strongest lineup at San Mames, which should see Thibaut Courtois continue in goal ahead of Andriy Lunin. Dani Carvajal is a shoo-in at right-back, while Nacho could feature on the left side in the absence of Mendy and Marcelo. Eder Militao and David Alaba are locked in for the centre-back slots.

With four wins and a draw in the last five games in all competitions, Athletic Bilbao is clearly in good form. The team once again reached the final of Spanish Super Cup where they defended their title, but they lost the final to their upcoming opponent Real Madrid. But Athletic Bilbao has a chance for revenge and if they can eliminated Real from Copa del Rey, then the competition becomes wide open. Athletic Bilbao has a pretty clean bill of health at the moment since only Unai Vencedor is likely to miss this game with an hamstring issue. On top of that, Athletic Bilbao has no players on international duty right now – courtesy of their Basque-only policy.

The current leaders in La Liga has four wins and one draw in the last five matches in all competitions, including a win over Athletic Bilbao in Spanish Super Cup final. That being said, the team did struggle a bit in La Liga recently since they have three wins, two draws, and one loss in the last six games. But overall, Real Madrid is having a great season – they already have one trophy and they can potentially add three more.

The biggest problem for Real Madrid right now is the state of the team. Marcelo is out with a suspension, while Mendy is out with injury. Casemiro and Vinicius Junior are questionable since they are still on international duty, while Rodrygo and Valverde are also with their national team and surely out of this game. Also, Benzema, Diaz, and Asensio are all dealing with fitness issues.

 

The Athletic Bilbao vs Real Madrid duel will be the last one in the quarter-finals of Copa del Rey, so let’s take a closer look at this match and what we can expect from it. Both teams are in great form at the moment since they both have four wins in the last five matches in all competitions. So, we expect to see a close, hard-fought game on Thursday. That being said, our prediction is for Real Madrid to win this match, which they did in four of the last five meetings with Athletic Bilbao. After all, they are the better team of the two and with Atletico, Barca, and Sevilla out of the picture, Real Madrid has a great chance to win the cup.

With Casemiro back from international duty, he should get the nod as the deepest of the three central midfielders. Luka Modric and Toni Kroos will take up slightly advanced positions and provide creativity. With Benzema unavailable, Luka Jovic is expected to get the nod as the central striker while Marco Asensio should feature on the right flank. Vinicius Junior should start ahead of Eden Hazard and Gareth Bale out on the left-wing despite having just returned from international duty.

With Karim Benzema unavailable and Vinicius Junior likely to be fatigued after his international commitments, the responsibility of leading the charge in the final third for Real Madrid on Thursday is expected to fall on the shoulders of Marco Asensio. The Spaniard has endured a mixed campaign thus far, but there have been occasions when he has shown his true quality, making vital contributions to the team’s cause. In total, the 26-year-old has a tally of seven goals and an assist from 23 matches in all competitions so far. Asensio was on target in Real Madrid’s Copa del Rey Round of 32 clash against Alcoyano and will be looking forward to adding to his tally against Athletic Bilbao.

Athletic Bilbao have no major injury concerns heading into this game, although Unai Vencedor is a slight doubt due to a hamstring issue. The likes of Oscar De Marcos, Iker Muniain and Yeray Alvarez are expected to be fit and available for selection, meaning Marcelino has a nearly full-strength squad at his disposal. The Basque outfit will set up in their usual 4-4-2 formation, with the manager expected to field his strongest lineup for the game. Unai Simon will be manning the goal for the home team, where he will be shielded by the centre-back pairing of Alvarez and Inigo Martinez while De Marcos and Mikel Balenziaga will be the two full-backs.

In spite of their Super Cup disappointment in Saudi Arabia, Athletic Bilbao can undoubtedly look back on the first few weeks of 2021 with unbridled fondness, as Marcelino led his side to a thrilling Copa del Rey win over Barcelona just four days after their defeat to Real Madrid.

Victories in La Liga, on the other hand, have been extremely difficult to come by for Marcelino’s men in recent weeks, but they entered the international break on the back of a 1-0 success at Rayo Vallecano courtesy of Nico Serrano’s winner on the half-hour mark.

That narrow success marks just a third win from 13 in La Liga for Athletic, but a new year has seemingly led to a new wave of confidence in the San Mames outfit, who head into the quarter-final on the back of six wins from their last nine in all tournaments.

Athletic eased to an opening 2-0 Copa del Rey win over Mancha Real before seeing off Barcelona in extra time last time out, with Marcelino’s side seeking to make it three final appearances on the bounce after falling at the final hurdle in the 2019-20 and 2020-21 editions.

One could hardly forget the memorable circumstances that Athletic found themselves in last year – losing to Real Sociedad in the 2020 final before defeat to Barca in the 2021 edition just two weeks later – and a first Copa del Rey crown since 1984 is therefore still eluding them.

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