MADRID, SPAIN. It's a Madrid Derby Final here as the only remaining silverware in Spanish football goes up for grabs in the Copa del Rey. Real Madrid comes into this one favourites priced at 4/7 with Bet365, while Atlético Madrid are 5/1 with various companies including Betfred, Coral and Ladbrokes. The draw meanwhile stands at 7/2 with BetVictor and Ladbrokes offering the best price.
A trophy less season is unacceptable at Real Madrid and they'll look to make sure it isn't here. Last weekend the draw with Espanyol handed the title over to rivals Barcelona, and José Mourinho who might be coaching one of his last games at the club will aim to bow out in style. The league was essentially conceded early by Madrid and then came the shattering KO by Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League. This trophy has been won 18 times by Madrid as they trail Athletic Bilbao and Barcelona in the standings.
The big blow in the run up this one has been the season ending injury for Raphaël Varane, with the Frenchman having a terrific season and he would've certainly started here. We could therefore see Raúl Albiol and Sergio Ramos partnering up in the centre as Pepe has fell out with Mourinho and likely will be in the stands. Marcelo is also back in training but Fábio Coentrao will continue at left-back. With five games unbeaten and the historical edge it will be Madrid coming into this one extremely confident.
Atlético Madrid meanwhile go up against Real Madrid but also this curse that hasn't seen them beat their glamorous neighbours since 1999. Diego Simeone fielded a strong team last time out against Barcelona as he felt the 5 days off was enough anyway, and he wanted his team to hit the ground running. Atleti are unbeaten in their last eight Copa del Rey games however and despite the history they will feel this is their best chance of winning, in this one off game.
Simeone went and named his starting XI on Thursday so we know it will be as follows: Courtois, Juanfran, Miranda, Godín, Filipe, Mario, Gabi, Arda, Koke, Costa and Falcao. Arda Turan started his first match back after a long lay-off at the weekend and he should be in much better condition after a full week of training. Simeone's 4-4-2 will look to press Madrid back and get in their faces, knowing playing quick and assertively will give them the best chance of getting the trophy here and ending that curse since 1999.
We'll start on the Over/Under market. Madrid have scored at least 2 goals in 9 of their last 10 matches against Atleti in all competitions, while in 19 consecutive Copa del Rey games stretching back to January 2011 Madrid have scored - quite the record. The idea of Over 2.5 goals suits here given Madrid's record and the fact they'll have defensive problems. Over 2.5 goals then is 4/7 with Bet365. I can see Both Teams To Score in this one too, which is 8/13 with Bet365.
Paying out on the last 5 occasions out of 7 too, is a goal inside the opening 15 minutes. That's a very decent return, and you can go for it at a best price of 13/8 with William Hill. Make sure to keep an eye on this market as this where the most value is, and regularity to given how often early goals have been scored.
Then to the Half-Time/Full-Time market. I like the idea of the Draw at HT, especially given how cautious both teams are expected to be in this game that matters so much. Overall Madrid winning it stands out though, and Draw/Madrid can be found at 4/1 with William Hill. Draw/Draw meanwhile over the course of 90 minutes looks appealing too, and is 7/1 with Boylesports and Ladbrokes.
Finally we move to First Goalscorer. Cristiano Ronaldo is the main man to look at here and has scored eight goals in as many appearances for against Atleti, so the Portuguese has to be taken seriously here. You can back him at 5/2 with William Hill. For Atleti meanwhile they have the top scorer in the Copa del Rey this season, and that's Diego Costa with seven goals. The Brazilian is down at 9/1 with Skybet and Stan James. Don't forget Falcao though, the Colombian hit man is top scorer overall with the club and is down at 6/1 with Skybet and William Hill. Madrid have their options too though, and Gonzalo Higuaín is the other aside from Cristiano - the Argentinean has a habit for important goals and he's 5/1 with Boylesports and Skybet.
The game kicks off at 20:30 GMT and will be shown live on Sky Sports 1 HD.