Europa League final: Atletico Madrid is favourite but Marseille odds can’t be denied
Atletico Madrid is too good for Europe’s second tier. The moment they finished third in their group in Champions League, Europa League teams knew that the title has gone. And as expected, Los Colchoneors are in final as favourite but Olympique Marseille odds can’t be denied.
Marseille may not boast of Atletico Madrid’s experience in Europe in recent years, but they have defied the odds to reach the finals. They are deserved finalists and 1993 European Cup winner can go in the game with their banners of 1993 European Cup glory – a trophy which Atletico envies. They have been close to winning it in recent times but it slipped away from their hands and here they are competing in Europe’s second division.
No team has suffered more final defeats in Europe in recent years than Atletico Madrid. They know that without playing the game they can’t be winners. Atletico’s defender Diego Godin was right to point out, “All the games and finals are different and having played before doesn’t help you to win without playing. What matters is your head, heart, and legs, so we must be prepared for the obstacles that will be presented and play the best possible match.”
They better be ready. We have witnessed this season in Europe that when you don’t respect your opponent, they hurt you more. AS Roma hurt Barcelona by eliminating them in Champions League and Red Bull eliminated Borussia Dortmund and Lazio in Europa League. If Atletico doesn’t want to lose their focus, they must respect Marseille journey.
They don’t look solid as a team on papers unlike Atletico, but they have given some very good performances. They have found the odd ones to form their team and they have thrived in odd circumstances.
Dimitri Payet was forgotten a year ago, Florian Thauvin was nobody, and Valere Germain was an unused player in Monaco’s last season Champions League semifinalist squad. Now, they together make a fearful attack in Europe and even Europe’s best defensive side need to fear them.
They can be on the song on their odd day, and considering Atletico Madrid’s low goal difference in winning matches may cause a problem for them. Atletico rarely win matches scoring many goals and if Marseille finds an early goal, they’ll be in trouble. They are definitely favourite to win Europa League trophy 2017/18, but I can’t deny the odds of Marseille to take the trophy home.