Atletico Madrid slipped the ax, but the crisis continues.  Simeone Runs Football

Do not confuse the outcome of this match. As long as the game is organized, for Atletico Madrid There was no hope. FC Porto was the initiator, dictating the terms and creating more chances to score. But after the break, chaos crept onto the pitch, with the guests finding themselves much better. As if they had heard the phrases repeated by Diego Simeone saying that playing in this team they cannot stop believing in victory. They won like the old days they missed so much. It is thanks to faith, suffering and counterattacks.

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The first – in the 56th minute, the ball unexpectedly fell under the feet of Antoine Griezmann, who was standing directly in front of Khali’s goal, and Atletico advanced. Later – between the 67th and 75th minutes, three red cards fell. Yannick Carrasco and Wendell weakened their teams and Porto reserve goalkeeper Agustin Marchesin was fined off the field. But in overtime, three goals were scored – two for Atletico after counter-attacks and individual fouls for their opponent, and one for Porto, by Sergio Oliveira from the penalty spot.

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7 points Atletico scored in six matches, in any other group – except for E, where promotion is still possible, but not very likely. F.C.B – It will not be enough for promotion. Simon and his players escaped the ax and avoided the biggest blunder in years, but they didn’t reassure fans that this was the end of the crisis. This is because this is identity. It starts on the field but goes much further than that. It touches on the core issues – the values ​​and character of the club.

Atlético is no longer a club of ‘builders, taxi drivers and lacrosse sellers’

Atletico has been trying for several years to change its identity, play beautifully and stand in line with Real and Barcelona. spend more on TransfersI buy players with pretty legs and no big heart. He is completely lost. The more he dreams of greatness, the shorter the path he wants to reach, the farther away from his destination.

In their best years, Simon’s players were able to craft a martial art for themselves. Fans are impressed by the individual defenders, the complete system of movement, shortening and aggressive play, as they usually appreciate the individual performance of the attackers or the combined team actions played forward. Their account was impressive. They scored a goal and gave the ball to the opponent and asked: What are you going to do with us? And we were sitting in front of the TV and we knew that even if the match went on for a few hours, it wouldn’t change anything. It was impossible for them to move. Ambitious, aggressive, tough. They find feat in running behind their opponents. They enjoyed making it difficult for them to play. Born “Cholismo”, in 2013 it was chosen as the second most important word of the year. It meant hard work and honoring Simeone, who was an absolute authority for the players. team leader. Barcelona included Messi, Real Cristiano Ronaldo and Atlético Simeone. No other team in the world had such a clear reflection of the qualities of their coach in the game.

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Atlético was playing the oppressed, representing all the poor who challenge the richest and most successful. That team’s icon, Thiago, said after the tournament that they’re like Robin Hood. Simeone explained that they had to play this way – put a stick in the spokes. During the feast he exclaimed, “It’s not just a cup! It’s proof that if you believe and work, you can do anything.” They wanted to be seen as bad and ugly. Over the years, such a narrative has suited their style: aggressive, fierce, combative, unpleasant primarily for the opponent, but also for the viewer. They convinced everyone that they had to. They had the face of German Burgos, the assistant coach who called his face “Mg” and claimed it was only suitable for Atlético.

From summer 2020, he is no longer at the club. Leave Simeone to work alone. Three years earlier, Atletico had moved from the antique but atmospheric Vincente Caldero to the trendy Wanda Metropolitano. He’s been spending hundreds of millions on remittances for years. He buys artists – like Joao Felix. He takes players with an attacking attitude – such as full-back Renan Lodi and Kieran Trippier. In the middle of the field, there are no longer contestants and players with tactical experience. From year to year – more and more. Even before this season, striker Matthews Cunha was hired in place of an extra centre-back, there were only four of them in the squad. Atlético is no longer the club of “builders, taxi drivers and lacrosse sellers” as Burgos proudly characterized. She had no such talented staff.

Atletico Madrid’s goal is clear. Asking for directions

However, it didn’t take long since I shuddered to the end about leaving the group Champions League. Atlético today has many freedom-loving footballers who break the rules and struggle when confined to strict tactical frameworks. In a lot of matches you get the impression that the team has changed, but not the person who is managing it. Simeone seems to struggle between what he believes and what the authorities expect of him. As if he did not keep pace with the changes in the club. As if inwardly he still had his own limitations, which prevented him from lowering his guard a bit and concentrating on his strikes.

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Atletico at a crossroads. He is wrong. It is not offensive or defensive today. He does not play calculated or attractive ball. He does not use the group’s fragments, he loses goals after him, he has several leaders who are clearly unsuitable – Jan Oblak, Jose Maria Jimenez, Marcos Llorente and Antoine Griezmann. But he also has time to think about it and fix it completely. The shattered victory over FC Porto gave himself a chance. in a league It will be hard to make up for the losses as Real Madrid have been reliable in recent weeks, but the Champions League is still open. This is still the biggest dream of Simeone and Atlético. So the goal is clear. Ask for directions.

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