Strong and weak points of Atalanta as they prepare to face Everton

14 September at 12:25

Atalanta will make their first European appearance in the last 26 years tonight as the last time La Dea played in a European competition was in the 1990/91 campaign.

Giampiero Gasperini’s side finished the last campaign in fourth place but this year’s team is pretty different from the one of last season. The likes of Franck Kessié and Andrea Conti joined AC Milan in the summer. The Ivorian midfielder has been replaced by Marten De Roon who made return to Bergamo after a disappointing one-year spell with Middlesbrough. Conti has been replaced by Thimoty Castagne and Hans Hateboer, two newcomers in Serie A.

In January, Roberto Gagliardini had also left Atalanta to join Inter.

Most ‘dangerous’ players for Everton will definitely be Mattia Caldara, a 23-year-old centre-back who netted 7 Serie A goals last season and has already been signed by Juventus. The player will move to Turin at the end of the season.



The team’s captain Papu Gomez is another player Ronald Koeman’s side should really keep a close eye on. Scorer of 16 goals in 37 Serie A games last season, the Argentinean is the technical leader of Atalanta. Gomez also provided 12 assists in the last campaign and did benefit from Gasperini’s decision to change his position moving him from the wings to the centre of the attack.

Andrea Petagna will probably partner Gomez tonight. A product of AC Milan academy, Petagna is a classic centre forward and is magnificently in sync with Gomez although he scored less goals than the Argentinean last season.



Atalanta have three points in the opening three games of the season (one win, two losses). They still allow too many goals and, at the moment, they don’t seem to be as compact as they used to be last season. In addition to that they won’t be playing their Europa League games in their stadium as the Atleti Azzurri d’Italia does not have the right standards to host European matches.

Overall, we can say that La Dea will try to make Everton’s life difficult this evening but the Toffees are the favourite side to take the three points home.

PREDICTED LINE-UPS
ATALANTA (3-4-1-2): Berisha; Toloi, Caldara, Masiello; Hateboer, De Roon, Freuler, Castagne; Kurtic; Petagna, Gomez. Manager: Gasperini.
 
EVERTON (3-4-2-1): Pickford; Keane, Williams, Jagielka; Holgate, Gueye, Schneiderlin, Baines; Klaassen, Rooney; Sandro Ramirez. Manager: Koeman.
 


Lorenzo Bettoni

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