Just another meltdown

Manzano describes Sunday's 3-2 defeat to Getafe as a "complete disaster"

Atlético Madrid defender Álvaro Domínguez  (Colchonero.com)

Atlético Madrid defender Álvaro Domínguez

While Atlético’s capacity to defy logic should never be underestimated, the events that took place at the Alfonso Pérez Coliseum late Sunday evening were simply mind-blowing.

Atleti inexplicably blew a 1-0 lead and the advantage of having one more man than opponents Getafe for most of the encounter.

The team lacked cohesion, intensity and guts.

Ever the friendly neighbours, Atlético tossed los Azulones a rope pulling them up and out of the bottom of the relegation zone, and six spots up into safety.

Of course, this act of generosity now leaves us in 11th place and 10 points adrift from – what is starting to sound like a fairy tale – the Champions League zone.

While it’s not quite time to write the 2011/12 campaign off just yet, bearing in mind that we’re still in contention for silverware in other competitions, the feeling that we may be in for another lost season in La Liga is really starting to sink in now.

If we can’t see off a 10-man last place club even after being spotted a one-goal advantage, it seems impossible that we’ll survive our end of the month visit to the Santiago Bernabéu.

A “thrashing advisory” for that looming match, a week after Levante’s visit to the Vicente Calderón, is hereby issued.

Manzano just as puzzled as the rest of us
“It has been a complete disaster,” manager (for now) Gregorio Manzano said in the post-match press conference.

“I don’t have words to explain what happened with the team of three days ago. It’s impossible that the team plays well and with intensity the previous two games and then today they don’t, especially when we were winning and had one more player.

“It’s an inexplicable, resounding and painful loss.”

While we have suffered several disappointing defeats this season, this one was the most painful one for Manzano.

“The match was there for us for the taking and having not won makes this, for me, the match that I leave the most hurt from,” he said.

The 55-year-old then had some scathing words for his men.

“The players have to understand that they are wearing the shirt of a big club, and that they have to give their all on the pitch,” he said.

“This can’t ever happen again at Atlético. In football, if you lack intensity on the field, it’s not worth anything.

“In these coming days, we must reflect.”


  • The right back carousel took another spin on Sunday. This time it was the ‘Antonio López experiment’. With Sílvio’s name left off the match selection, it seemed as if Luis Amaranto Perea would be in line for appearance number 293. Manzano instead opted for rolling out ‘El Capi’ López, playing invertedly, to man the defensive right flank. The veteran lefty sent in countless harmless floaters into the hands of Getafe goalkeeper Moyà in a largely ineffective performance. Down 2-1 with 20 minutes left on the clock, López was replaced by Eduardo Salvio.
  • Atlético’s official site reports Antonio López will undergo a “joint cleaning” procedure on his right knee on Tuesday. The minor surgery had been scheduled well before Sunday’s match.
  • Radamel Falcao’s goal was his seventh in league play, making him the highest scoring Colombian in La Liga history. Falcao surpassed former Atlético striker Adolfo ‘El Tren’ Valencia’s total of six from the 1994/95 campaign (via @pedritonumeros).
  • Prior to Sunday, Atleti were the only team to not have scored an away goal.
  • Set piece nightmare. None of Getafe’s three goals came from open play. Atleti were doomed by two free kicks and a penalty, all three coming from clumsy fouls by Tiago, Miranda and Arda.
  • According to Atlético’s official site, Diego Godín sustained a right thigh injury. The extent of the knock is not known yet.
  • Atlético’s 13 points are one less than they had at this point during their infamous 1999/00 relegation season (via @pedritonumeros).
  • We have now taken just 1 point from five league matches away from the Vicente Calderón.
  • Atleti will fly to Egypt on Wednesday the 9th for a friendly in Cairo which will take place on Thursday the 10th against Zamalek.

  • Urban

    Im disgusted and sick. Horrible performance.

    its clear that we are not only playing bad but we also lack the attitude. There is no fighting spirit in the team. When we need to bite the grass we lack the guts.

    For me we have a leadership crisis. Its not only the coach, but for me the captains are also to blame in huge part. Our captains lack merit. They are not good enough and are unable to motivate the team. They either dont play, lack footballing skills – which are also important (like Perea) – or dont have the personality.

  • Roni

    Really enjoyed your “Note section”. You’re doing a great job with the site. Too bad the team won’t follow your example…



  • Davide

    What is that Tiago donkey doing in Atlético? And why the hell is he a starter??!! A blind monkey with a typewriter can do his “job”. Not only is he walking in granny pace and just watch when opposing players run by him, he also put nine out of ten passes back to defence for no reason whatsoever (totally not pressured or marked by opposition) instead of looking to break on the offensive. He is taller then everyone else and can not win a defensive och offensive header to save his life.

  • right

    sooooo bad he is (tiago)!!! assunsao or koke could be much better!!! this manzano has saved his ass last week by winning tow games!!! they say they want to play for CL!! but like this we will couldn’t even play for europa league!!!

  • ural

    Very bad performance,even when getafe player sent off we still couldnt do any thing they were scared to touch the ball.
    The bloody refferee One of the reason that we lost the game he did so many misstakes unbelievable i never seen such a amateur idiot refferee…

  • javi

    We need a new coach and we need to get rid of Tiago and Miranda, NOW.
    If we dont pick up replacments in the winter then replace them with Pulido and Koke.
    By the way has anyone seen how Raul garcia is doing in Osasuna??? He is their highest scorer and the architect, together with Ibra of the only gol against Madrid yesterday. They are using him offensively and not defensively as we did and the guy is playing as well as he did before he came with us. If he comes back, we signed a two year extnesion, we should learn from Osasuna as to how to use him.

  • atletisrael

    I realy hope that this dreadful start won’t lead to relegation fights because as we saw yesterday there isn’t any fighters on the field.

    I remember the moment of the red card and remember myself being relieved that the game would be an easy one. I think that the players felt the same and there was no-one to fight once we gonr under. No leadership what so ever from neither A.lopez, Alvaro or Gabi, all captains supposedly.

    SHAME on us

  • starvs

    I personally really enjoyed this game. But I also hate myself and pray for death every night.

  • 92

    I see that some of us already gave up hope on qualifying to Champions League and judging by yesterday’s poor performance which was losing against the bottom team, giving up one goal lead, playing against 10-man for over 60 minutes it could become very much likely that we are not gonna qualify to CL but we can’t give up just yet ,there’s still a lot of matches to be played, we’ve just played 11 and we still haven’t finish the first half of the season, and after that, then there’s the second part of the season, I know that we have been very inconsistent but we have a great team, we just have to finish the season strongly and try to earn as much points as possible and then when the second part of the season starts, we’ll be ready to cope with it.

  • 92

    For those of you who say having faith in young players doesn’t matter and that Koke is not ready and has little experience to be a starter and he is not at the level of Gabi or Mario, if they are at “some level”, consider this, Abdelaziz Barrada, he was a completely stranger prior to the start of the season but somehow he earned the trust of Garcia Plaza, it was a risky move considering he had little or no experience to cope with first division duties, but Garcia Plaza placed all his faith in the kid and he is responding to the challenge with impressive performances, he has been one Getafe’s most outstanding players, and not just yesterday’s display, but ever since he made his debut he has been in good shape, it’s just that Getafe was getting awful results and had a bad streak but Abdel has been a consistent player for Getafe, and he deserves recognition.

  • GS Fan 1905


    I agree with your assesment. I also sighed a big relief when Getafe were down to 10 men. Well, the rest is history.

    From what I can see, there is a disconnect between a lot of the players. They do just fine when playing a short passing game, but when it comes to making intelligent runs and playing through balls, they’re not always on the same page.

    Diego was very frustrated yesterday because his team mates were not making the runs that Diego had wanted them to.

    There was no drive! When Getafe were down to 10 men, Atleti should have destroyed Getafe!!

    Manzano – This guy has the personality of a bank machine! His a pylon in a suit!. Do somethin man!!! Talk to your players from the sideline, yell at them, encourage them, do whatever needs to be done!!

    Courtois – Bring in Asenjo, please!! Why is Atleti “training/developing” Chelsea’s future GK?????? What hapenned to looking after your own?? What’s going to happen when Courtois leaves?

    and lastly, “AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!” Sorry, had to get that out.