Diego Simeone proud of his Atletico Madrid players despite Champions League exit
- Author: Julie Sanders May 23, 2017,
May 23, 2017, 8:57
Atletico, which trailed 3-0 after the first leg, scored twice in the first 16 minutes at Vicente Calderon Stadium to move within a goal of sending the semifinal second-leg into extra time.
"Now we have to go for the league title, we really want to win it, and then we'll have time to think about the final in Cardiff", said Cristiano Ronaldo.
Driven on by the deafening Calderon, Atletico started well, creating more danger in the opening minutes than it managed in the entire first leg before Saul nodded home Koke's corner in the 12th minute.
Keylor Navas made a double save on 65 minutes to deny Yannick Carrasco's low shot and Antoine Griezmann's header from the rebound.
'On Wednesday we have an extremely hard game which for some would be impossible, but not for us, ' Simeone told reporters.
That was until Karim Benzema somehow evaded three Rojiblanco defenders before Isco grabbed what was a crucial away goal.
To their credit Real Madrid remained calm and proceeded to dominate possession for the rest of the half, frustrating the home players and taking the sting out of Atleticos attacking thrust. But Im with Real Madrid, another club of my life.
Standing in Madrid's way is a remarkable Juve side who have conceded just three goals in their entire Champions League campaign in 2016-17. The first 20 or 30 minutes will stay in the minds of everyone. We need to clone them. "The next step is not small, it is very big, but if we can improve then there is a future". Zidane said he knew his team would have to "suffer", but was correct to say the game "changed completely" after the 25-minute mark. The result was an event that, whichever side you take, was worthy of those sodden celebrations.
"We played well against them this season so we've got a chance", the 30-year-old told Sevilla's official website.
Furthermore, there is "total and absolute confidence" in the trainer, with the newspaper also citing parallels between him and Jose Mourinho, who penned a new contract just days after he won La Liga with Los Blancos in 2012.
It is also more heartbreak for Atletico, who have lost to Real in the final twice in the past few seasons, and have now been handed another exit by their Madrid rivals.
"One thing is to be successful at Europe, something which delights us, but we should try to dominate in Spain too because the fans deserve it".
"This performance was the least that we could have done", Atletico captain Gabi said.