Atletico Madrid failed to go two points clear at the top of the table after managing only a 1-1 draw with Sevilla during the weekend. They came into the match level on points with Barcelona after having managed to sustain the challenge since the start of the season. They were expected to be one of the competitors for the Champions League places, but this has been a stunning season for the club managed by one of their former players. Barcelona failed to win their match against Levante after a 1-1 draw.
This result has now meant that Barcelona and Atletico Madrid only have a one-point advantage over Real Madrid, who won their match against Real Betis 5-0 in emphatic fashion. Madrid are slowly coming to their best form and this has put Atletico Madrid’s chances of winning the title in jeopardy. Despite this, manager Diego Simeone says that he is happy with the result. The club recently played against Barcelona and drew that match as well. A number of Atletico Madrid players have been linked with moves abroad, but they would want to win the title in an extraordinary season for the club.
Summer signing David Villa opened the scoring in the 18th minute, but Rakitić’s penalty in the 73rd minute equalised for the away team, who also had a man sent off in the final minute of the match.
“We always imagined that this would be an encounter that would be resolved by fine details and that’s how it was. It was a hard fought game with a lot of competition, both teams seeking out the errors of their opponent. We’ve taken a point which serves to keep us in a privileged position in La Liga,” said the Atletico Madrid manager, whose team next face Athletic club in the Copa del Rey.
With reports emerging claiming that the German midfielder of Real Madrid is unhappy with the Spanish club, it was becoming more and more plausible that Khedira was going to exit Real Madrid in the winter transfer window but after suffering from a knee injury during Germany’s match against Italy, Ancelotti stepped it up and said that he will not be looking for a replacement.
We have two solutions: one is to bring in a player with similar attributes toKhedira, while the other is to change the system.
‘’What’s important is for the players to feel comfortable in the system. We have players that haven’t played that much but are in good shape, like Casemiro.
I need to ponder the solution. We have no plans to change the squad’’.
“Khedira gives balance to the team,”Ancelotti told Marca. “I’m sure we’ll manage in his absence, though he’s a very important player for us. But we’ll cope.”
C.Ronaldo and Gareth Bale are leading the charge for Real Madrid both in Champions League and La Liga as they are finally appearing to be making the partnership that every fan of Real Madrid wanted them to.
Even with the newly formed partnership from the Welshman and the Portuguese star, Real Madrid still is however trailing behind Atletico Madrid and Barcelona in La Liga and the real hit they suffered was when playing against their rivals Barcelona as they lost 2-1.
They are hoping to get revenge and bring it back if they are to meet in the next stages of the Champions League as both clubs are at the edge of securing their place into the last 16 teams of the European tournament.
Taking into consideration the huge price tag of Gareth Bale (€100 million) it will be a disappointment if Real Madrid fails to win the Champions League or La Liga.
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The manager of Atletico Madrid, Diego Simeone, has said that his team is still not the favourite to lift the La Liga trophy this season.
Atletico has started its La Liga campaign fantastically well this season. They have won each and every La Liga game that they have played so far and are currently at no. 2 in the points table with 21 points in 7 games. They are behind Barcelona on the basis of goal difference.
Recently, Atletico won its first La Liga Madrid derby in the last 14 years by securing a 1-0 win over the local rivals Real Madrid.
Because of Atletico’s consistency so far in the season, the experts believe that they are the serious contenders for the La Liga title, but, Simeone doesn’t think so.
Talking to the reporters yesterday, the Atletico manager said, “We can’t start thinking about the title at this point of time. The season has just begun. There is a long way to go. We can’t let the complacency creep in. We need to be calm and collected and take one game at a time.”
“It’s not that we are winning because of one or two players. The whole team is contributing and that’s really nice. We are putting in hard work and are getting rewarded for that.”
Simeone has been the manager of Atletico since the last 20 months or so. He had joined the club in the middle of the 2011-12 Season.
The former Argentinean player has had quite a bit of success during his tenure at Atletico so far. The team has won some big trophies under him in the last couple of seasons including the Europa League, the UEFA Super Cup and the Copa Del Rey.
Under Simeone, Atletico has so far played 97 games out of which they have won 62.