For those of you who don’t know, the Champions League 2019/2020 season is back up and running. The revamped competition kickstarted a few days ago with the second legs of playoff matches that were supposed to be played roughly half a year ago. Obviously, the new normal pushed for a different set of rules – we’re looking at one-legged CL playoffs played on neutral grounds with no fans on the stands. This is certainly not ideal for a passionate game of football, but it will have to suffice… after all, something’s better than nothing!
— Atalanta B.C. (@Atalanta_BC) August 11, 2020
As for our Atalanta vs. PSG predictions, in the remainder of this piece we’ll be checking both teams out and comparing their key traits, with hope that they’ll point us in the right direction. We’ll start off with general soccer betting info, followed by general info on both teams, recent results, key players and tactical approaches. Basically, the usual stuff we base our soccer picks on. So, without further ado, let’s dig right in!
Atalanta vs. PSG Predictions
What we’re looking at here is one of four quarterfinals matches scheduled to be played in the next four days. More precisely, from August 12th to August 15th. One quarterfinal match per day.
General Info on Both Teams
Atalanta is coming into this match without Gollini, Palomino and Ilicic. Gollini is their first goalie, while Ilicic and Palomino are typical starters with around 60 appearances this season (combined). Atalanta is one of the biggest sensations in this Champions League. They were practically out of the competition in the group stage but managed to turn things around and snatch a place in the playoffs right in front of Dinamo and Shakhtar.
This will definitely hinder PSG’s ability to attack down the flanks with their typical speed. It will also stop them from controlling the game up the field. Verratti’s absence could be more problematic for PSG’s performance than that of Mbappe. Yes, Mbappe is a goalscoring machine, but Verratti is the player that holds PSG together.
Even when he’s not in the best of forms, he gives all of his teammates an extra competitive edge with his presence on the pitch.
Continuing with our Atalanta vs. PSG predictions, let’s talk about the most recent results of both sides. Mind you, most recent matches/results, not most recent Champions League matchups. Why not? The answer is simple – their last CL matches date all the way back to March…
Just five points separated Gasperini’s men from winning the title, which speaks a lot about the form they’re in. As for PSG; they won Ligue 1 after the French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced there will be no sporting events in the country until September. PSG had lost just three and drew two matches at that point, snatching impressive 22 wins. They were eight points clear from the second-place Marseille, with a match to play.
Our Atalanta vs. PSG picks aren’t done just yet! We still need to say a thing or two about tactical approaches on both ends before we can start with the wrap-up. And, trust me, if you’re interested in soccer betting, you should read the whole piece, from start to finish!
We’re looking at two aggressive teams that don’t like to beat around the bushes for too long. Atalanta scored almost 100 goals in Serie A, which means a lot since the Italian top-level league is typically labeled as a defensive-minded one. 98 goals in total, 48 conceded – enough for the third spot on the table and another season in the Champions League.
BPSG scored 75 and conceded 24. However, PSG didn’t play the full season AKA 38 matches. As mentioned earlier, the French Ligue 1 was cut after the 27th/28th matchday, meaning PSG would probably etch closer to the 100 goals mark too.
Tuchel’s men typically play a 4-4-2 formation, with an occasional 4-3-3 against certain types of teams. They play fast, can pass the ball well, have incredible cohesion and aren’t afraid to take risks in the final third all for the sake of scoring an absolute banger. Even without Verratti and Mbappe, PSG has plenty of raw goalscoring talent and pace to give headaches to Atalanta’s players.
Gasperini’s Atalanta became known for its ultra-attacking gameplay with three players in the back, a tightly packed middle and plenty of pace up front. Typically, they’re deployed in 3-4-2-1 or 3-4-1-2 formation, depending on their option in the middle. I reckon the 62-year-old Italian strategist won’t succumb to the pressure and stick with his aggressive, proven-to-work tactics.
Wrapping Everything Up
After checking out the stats, it’s clear that both these teams will do their best to score an early goal… but objectively speaking, the quality is on PSG’s side and they should cruise to a win. If Atalanta was playing home, I’d actually go with them. They’re aggressive, know how to deal with tough defenses and, even without Ilicic, have plenty of goalscoring potential.
However, we’re looking at a neutral playing grounds here (Estadio da Luz), meaning there’s no such thing as home advantage.
In that case, the only problem I see with our Atalanta vs. PSG predictions is the fact PSG didn’t play a proper competitive game in quite a while. Sure, they did play a couple of friendlies and French Cup matches… but their players aren’t in it as Atalanta’s player who finished their season ten days ago.
As for the picks, here’s what I’m going with:
I’m going in with proper risk here, but I’m positive about this one! The stats point out two aggressive teams that score goals with ease. Both are solid in defense, but there’s no way one of them fails to score tomorrow. In the end, though, I believe PSG will go through even though the golden boy, Mbappe, is out of the equation.