Derbies often serve as an opportunity to settle accounts and going into the first Madrid showdown at the new Metropolitano there are two players currently in the red: Antoine Griezmann and Cristiano Ronaldo. The France striker has not found the net for Atlético since September 27 while the Real Madrid forward arrives at the fixture with just one goal in LaLiga so far this season.
Forwards tend to hit purple patches but both Griezmann and Ronaldo are splashing about in puddles of grey. Griezmann has failed to score in his last seven games and has now gone 644 minutes without breaching the opposition defence, his worst run since he joined Atlético. Ronaldo, meanwhile, has one league goal fewer to his name than his opposite number having only scored once so far, against Getafe. It is the worst start to a Liga campaign for the Portuguese since his arrival at the Bernabéu. In his two previous slowest starts in a white shirt (2009-10 and 2016-17), he had still scored five by this stage of the competition, although he missed the first four games through suspension.
Ronaldo and Griezmann no strangers to derby day
Griezmann and Ronaldo have faced each other 24 times in the Madrid derby in all competitions with the Real Madrid forward scoring 17 times in those fixtures to the France international’s five. Ronaldo is the highest-scoring player in the history of the derby, with 21 goals in 29 appearances.
Neither player is flavor of the month among their own fans: Griezmann has faced censure for flirting with PSG and supposed interest in a move to Barcelona in the summer while Ronaldo has been involved in a minor spat with Sergio Ramos amid rumours of a desire to leave the club in January.
These infractions will be swiftly forgotten though if they fire their side to victory on Saturday night in a derby match where redemption lies in the result.