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Late Dembélé equaliser denies Atleti after Costa ends drought

Barça prevented Atlético from leapfrogging them in LaLiga after Diego Costa's goal was cancelled out by a late Ousmane Dembélé strike.

Barcelona's French forward Ousmane Dembele (C) scores a goal during the Spanish league football match between Club Atletico de Madrid and FC Barcelona at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid on November 24, 2018. (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO / AFP)

Atlético Madrid 1-1 Barcelona: as it happened

Atlético Madrid vs Barcelona: match preview

Atlético Madrid host leaders Barcelona tonight (20:45 CET) knowing that a win will see them leapfrog the Spanish champions at the top of the LaLiga table.

Atlético out to end winless sequence against Blaugrana

To do so, though, third-placed Atleti must end an eight-year winless league run against Barça. Not since goals by Diego Forlán and Simao Sabrosa earned a 2-1 home victory in February 2010 have they taken all three points against the Catalans.

Diego Simeone's men must also contend with significant absences from their defence - one that has conceded fewer than any other team in LaLiga this season (eight) - with Diego Godín, José María Giménez and Juanfran all injured.

However, Stefan Savic, Lucas Hernández, Koke and Thomas Lemar are all available to Simeone after missing the 3-2 win over Athletic Bilbao a fortnight ago.

Barcelona visit Atleti side unbeaten in nine in LaLiga

Meanwhile, Barcelona arrive at the Wanda Metropolitano looking to get back to winning ways after a 4-3 defeat to Real Betis at the Camp Nou before the international break.

But just as recent history does not point to an Atleti triumph, so too do the statistics serve to temper expectations of an away win: Barça visit a side on a sequence of nine games without loss in Primera División, and who remain unbeaten at home in the top flight this term.

Ernesto Valverde must do without Ivan Rakitic, who is both injured and suspended, while Philippe Coutinho and Thomas Vermaelen remain sidelined with thigh problems.

But having returned to the squad against Betis two weeks ago, Samuel Umtiti makes his comeback to the Barcelona XI after recovering from a knee injury that has kept the central defender out of action since late September.


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