La Liga: Atlético 0 – 2 Betis

Atlético shut out by Real Betis

How much longer can Manzano stay?(Colchonero.com)

How much longer can Manzano stay?
(Colchonero.com)

After five successive home victories, Atlético lost its first match at the Vicente Calderón this season.

The team slumped to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of a hard working Real Betis.

The biggest surprise in Gregorio Manzano’s line-up was the inclusion of Juanfran at right back. The winger replaced Luis Perea, who hadn’t fully recovered from a knock sustained on Thursday against Rennes, and was left off the match selection.

The makeshift wingback created Atleti’s first big opportunity of the game. Juanfran crossed from the right and Falcao headed just inches wide of the post.

The Colombian again just missed the target when his volley whistled past the post only two minutes later.

Real Betis tried to break quickly on the counterattack while Atleti, with Diego in charge, tried to break down the Andalusian defence.

Despite dominating in the first half, the Rojiblancos created few chances. Headers from Godín and shots by Diego weren’t enough to worry Casto, and the Betis goalkeeper did well to stop two shots by Arda Turan shortly before the break.

At the start of the second half Real Betis took the lead. Diego Godín lost the ball in midfield and the visitors switched gears quickly. A cross from the left reached youngster Pozuelo who, after Domínguez slipped, only had Courtois to beat.

With Atleti going down the chants urging Manzano to go increased in volume. When the coach decided to take off Arda Turan and Diego, our best player on the day, the crowd went wild.

Substitute Koke almost immediately tied the score, but Casto pulled off an impressive save to shut out the canterano.

In the 72nd minute goalscorer Pozuelo was dismissed when he received his second booking for a handball, although replays showed referee González got his decision entirely wrong.

A man down, Betis depended even more on their goalkeeper to get a result at the Vicente Calderón and Casto grew even stronger as the match progressed. Adrián seemed almost certain to score with a header, but the Verdiblancos’ shotstopper reacted with an incredible reflex to keep his clean sheet.

As Gabi and Adrián missed more chances to equalise, Betis nearly doubled their lead. Santa Cruz crossed to Jefferson Montero, but the Ecuadorian winger missed the target.

In the added time Roque Santa Cruz did add Betis’ second. Despite their numerical disadvantage, the veteran striker found himself in a position to shoot and after Juanfran failed to make a clearance Santa Cruz pounced on the rebound.

Molina even could have scored a third if it wasn’t for Thibaut Courtois.

Line-up: Courtois; Juanfran, Godín, Domínguez, Filipe; Assunção, Gabi (“82 Salvio), Arda Turan (“68 Koke), Diego (“68 Reyes); Adrián and Falcao.

Goals: 0-1 Pozuelo (“54); 0-2 Santa Cruz (“90)


  • FancyFartPants

    falcao is a joke, he loses duels, cant touch balls with height,, when received a pass loses the ball easily, so many crosses received , and done nothin, not even made the defense hard to defend. if you substitute arda and diego, this will happen,.. so dissapointing man .. like getafe atletico cant even make a fist against 10 men. there is no team!!!! solo solo solo

  • True, Falcao is useless, give me Cachavacha Forlán back!

  • Fucks sake, we payed a fortune for him, and he’s dancing fucking ballet on the Calderon! What was it…40 something, 46 millions? No, yes? Something, I don’t know…but seriously, what the fucking fuck?!

  • ratchet

    Falcao can and has scored goals. I thankfully didnt watch the match so i dont know how bad he played. However, i believe manzano is to blame. He had 3 games to save his joband has lost one. I am pretty sure hell be sacked

  • falcao

    betis created 2 chances and score 2 goals we created 100 chances and no score………what can i say…

  • Mais

    falcao had a really off day
    i think atleti had something like 60% possession, betis just always shut it down in the box
    dono how this one is manzanos fault to be honest

  • ratchet

    I believe his tactics were poor as usual. Even if he isnt the main person to blame, he still needs to go

  • Mais

    i dont want him either, but i dont think it helps to scapegoat him
    his tactics have improved, they were horrendous to start but they have changed, taking into account injuries
    ‘too little too late’ is potentially a dangerous stance to take, just my two cents

  • ratchet

    I see your point but we are 10th in the table, just 19 points from 16 games, and i really dont think well get anywhere with him in charge. Weve got an awful away record and have now lost our undefeated streak at the calderon. He really needs to go

  • Mais

    i agree, im just as heart broken about the state of affairs as im sure u are…but who wants his job? the prospect of not finding a replacement (or a good one, considering caminero’s competence is probably up for contention at this point) seems a very real possibility. and then what? we complain all season? well we probably arent an issue, but the fans in the stands i should say..i mean the job is being flat out rejected..i have to credit manzano for shouldering the criticism like a man

  • Javi Lozoya

    It’s official, Manzano’s tenure at Atleti is and has been a real failure, his ball possesion style is useless and inefective, you guys saw it today, we created countless of goalscoring chances and yet, we failed to score a single goal.

  • Javi Lozoya

    And Falcao?, I thought he scored pretty much on every ocassion he had, he had 2 goalscoring oportunities and yet he failed to convert on both, you can say it was a “bad day” for him but that’s a poor excuse, and it is in these kind of matches that Falcao needs to step up because we paid 45M for him and he is supposedly the “world’s best center forward” and a” clinical finisher”, he can score 15 goals in the Europa League but at the same time ha can miss to clear goalscoring opportunities against low ranked Betis.

  • Mais

    Javi L, it wasnt an excuse, i fully blame falcao for his missed opportunities
    ur comment actually reflects my opinion on his performance pretty well, in that it was falcao’s mistakes not manzanos that led to wasted chances (for example, there was a potential chance at one point where falcao didnt turn around in time, i dont put that on mazano for instance, falcao was just not on the ball so to speak)

  • Mais

    saying “off day” is me being polite

  • Javi Lozoya

    I get what you mean, and obviously the players are to blame for goalscoring opportunities missed, but I do think Manzano’s possesion scheme is useless and inefective, what’s the point of having possesion of the ball and creating about 10 goalscoring chances per game if your players struggle to score a single goal, I miss the old Atleti that used to counterattack and actually won important matches, like Quique’s Atleti, Javier Aguirre’s or even Abel Resino’s, those team didn’t had too much possesion of the ball but they actually worked and won very important matches, among 2 international trophies, so I actually think Manzano is to blame and not the players because he changed the team’s playing style.

  • Javi Lozoya

    Also, we have to accept that with the current poor level displayed so far, we are going nowhere and are not gonna achieve anything unless serious measures are taken.

  • Mais

    yes thank you! it has been a whiiiile since anyone has said anything other than i hate manzano, we DO need to scrap the possession football! it works for barca but we should just leave it to them..now if manzano were to scrap possession football, then we could actually get somewhere.
    I’m playing devils advocate about manzano i know, but until we have someone sign a contract i cant bring myself to keep harping it ruins my day..have u guys read that report that was discussed on thisisatleti? so depressing..manzano magically working out is what keeps me going through the day 😛

  • Javi Lozoya

    I guess the match againts Real Madrid was nothing more than a mere optical illusion, it was too good to be true, now we’re are bacl to OUR reality and that is that we are really a very poor team with no spirit whatsoever and no ideas of what the hell do we actually want to achieve.

  • Javi Lozoya

    I don’t follow This is Atleti that much, but it’s true that even though in most matches we have most possesion of the ball and create decent goalscoring opportunities but we fail to convert them, and that says it all, when you struggle to score words are not enough.

  • k14

    Other from the score line, Atleti actually played well.
    They were the dominant team, with so many chances. And just because Falcao missed for a change, you don’t need to go all dramatic about it, it happens to every player, even more expensive ones.
    Actually, he worked well for those chances and it wasn’t as easy to score as you make it sound to be 🙂

    What I can say about this game today, it was unfortunate.

  • Honestly, I am bitterly disappointed.

  • SoLobo

    Few months ago we (yeah, including me) were all excited about our new style of play… And we were all saying how much we like the new Atleti that posseses the ball… And how we were fed up of seeing Perea making long balls to Forlan… I have told it before… We need time! I am not happy, but be patient! It ‘s better to lose a season but build something stable and correct!

  • Rojiblanco93

    Think Manzano needs to fuck off, right now, im not blaming Falcao He showed us that He is able to score goals, but Manzano didnt prove anything… Benitez would be great!!!

  • Javi Lozoya

    k14, you say this was an “unfortunate” match, are you serious dude?, we created about a million chances, it’s not a matter of luck it’s a matter of being overwhelming and effective and convert the chances you have into goals, and according to you we’re just being “unlucky” yeah right, accept it, we’re in CRISIS, we lost againts a low ranked team like Betis and we’re the worst visaitor team in Spain, even tough you believe we’re doing “just fine” that doesn’t means it’s actually true.

  • Javi Lozoya

    k14, no one is being dramatic about Falcao, I’m just stating the truth, he was signed too score to important goals and today was an important match to do so, what you say it’s really a poor excuse, Falcao is a professional and a center forward and have no margin of missing those real good chances, he can score unimaginable goals like last match Espanyol, he scored out of nowhere practically and yet he missed two great chances like today, it looks that he isn’t the best center forward in the world after all, and for a player that cost 45M people expect for Falcao to be an important player that can actually make a difference in important matches and when things turn ugly like today, but I guess that 46M was actually too much money for a player that can’t make a difference on the pitch on his own. And that’s the actual truth.

  • ratchet

    I actually agree completely. Aguero won games on his own, and in my opion, got us into the europa league. He can make a difference. Falcao needs supply

  • Ian

    I didn’t see the match, but from what I read, we played pretty bad.
    Falcao may not be like Aguero who can win games on his own, but I think he’s still pretty good.

    I think the best we could do now is to cut all the negatives and give our full support to Manzano and the team. We have nothing more we can do except that.

    Maybe, just maybe, Manzano and the team aren’t coping well with the pressure and expectations of the fans, thus their poor results.

    I’d say we lower our expectations and gibe our full support for the team and give them a chance for this season and next season. Changing managers have been proven to do no good.

  • Javi Lozoya

    John Guidetti scored a hat-trick againts Twente, 11 goals in 12 matches for Guidetti, that’s pretty impressive, not bad for the 19 year old kid, he came in handy to Feyenoord who needed a golscorer since Castaignos and Wijnaldum left the club.
    Definetely since Guidetti is a 19 year old I think he is a player to watch, he is a true jewel in my opinion, I know he is young annd that’s why he still has aspects and plenty of time to improve his game, hopefully he keeps scoring goals and more importantly he stays with Feyenoord for a long time because he is in a very good sintony with the Rotterdam outfit.

  • Ringo Schut

    I’m all for the “giving time”, but I don’t see improvement in midfield and the overall combinations and positioning and that’s most important in possession football.
    Seems Koke is getting some new minutes lately, I think he’s an improvement, but teamwork is what needs to be improved, we shouldn’t have to put our hopes in one player, if the team was combining better, Falcao could’ve done what he’s best at more often than he has so far for Atleti.
    We already knew what kind of striker he was before he came here, no need to judge him by what he’s not.
    He and Kun and Forlan are all totally different players, Falcao is the least individualistic of the three, for instance.

    I’m really too impatient, but I’m really not sure Manzano’s the right guy, I do think they should keep the possession tactics, though, only Reyes and Tiago wouldn’t potentially fit in a good one.

  • Javi Lozoya

    Yeah, Falcao is a goal poacher not a game chamger player but he was signed to score goals and make the best out of the goalscoring chances and he hasn’t, like today’s match, it was a very important match for the team’s ambitions and hopes to finish the season with a victory, the table was served to Falcao and he just didn’t do what he was supposed too, which is scoring goals, I’m not asking him to be an stuning player like Kun or Forlan, all he has too do is score goals in important matches like today’s match, but inexplicably he missed to great opportunities and those misses cost Atleti the lost.

  • Javi Lozoya

    Goals you don’t score, you see them converted against you, that’s a saying in the Spanish speaking world and it became true today, Falcao missed two chances, which would’ve meant the lead for Atleti and a possible victory, and Betis had two chances and they converted them because Atleti missed the ones they had.

  • dgsozkan

    No need to blame Falcao,I believe. It’s just absurd. We are too far away from our expactations. Thanks to Manzano we are an ordinary team who can’t win 2 or 3 consecutive games even though we have a good squad. I admit that our squad isn’t perfect but this is not in the place we deserve. This isn’t the team we wanted. I don’t know how many times I’ve said that but Manzano has to be fired. He couldn’t have caused more damage. It’s become an agony to witness our idiotic loses.

  • FF

    this derective make me laugh!!! they waiting for albacete to beat us again to have a good reason to sack manzano !!! la liga is now over its gonna be hard to be in cl places!!! look at the table, levante, osasuna, sevilla and malaga are before us!!! shame on you manzano w’re the bad away team

  • ratchet

    I guess well just have to see what happens over the second half of the season. Well just have to take things, the highs and lows, as they come and make judgements of the team and the people in charge at the end of the season. We just need to take what we have when the seasons over and see the positives, whether thats EL or CL. Hopefully we get either one of them

  • Blaugrana 7

    For how long will you keep on sacking coaches?

    Here’s a great article by Sid Lowe on the situation at hand.

  • Blaugrana 7

    For how long will you keep on sacking coaches?

    Here’s a great article by Sid Lowe:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2011/dec/19/atletico-coach-club-la-liga#start-of-comments

  • Javi Lozoya

    @Blaugrana 7, is Gil who sacks the coaches in turn not us fans also Gil is the main responsible for the constant downfall of Atleti, at least I know that, and of course is alarming the number of sacked coaches in the last 15 years, but that’s solely Gil’s fault not the fans.

  • Davide

    Blaugrana 7//

    If the board actually hired i great coach sometime than we might not have to fire him. All i see is a string av mediocre coaches hired at the Calderón. The problem is that the board is scared of strong managers who will tell them what players to get and how to run the club. Gil and Cerezo wants mediocre quiet puppet managers so they can buy and sell players as they please without interference. Also a strong manager might get the supporters on his side witjhout actuallt asking for it, given the the hostile climate that exists between fans and the board for years now. A popular manager at Atlético (there aren’t many) might be very hard to fire if he stand upp to the board and inteferes in the clubs internal and financial affairs. The kind of managers Atlético have been hiring the last years is not based on what’s best for the club, but on politics.

  • Blaugrana 7

    @Lozoya
    I was talking about Atleti as a club…You can’t keep doing the same thing and expecting a different result.
    Coaches have been fired and hired and in some cases like Manzano, re-hired but it has always ended up as a quick-fix, a cosmetic solution.
    I’m glad you identified Gil as Atleti’s problem. He is indeed the major problem and it’s time he got thrown out of the club.

  • Sergio Lopez

    Since Manzano substituted Diego, who was absolutely the best man on the field, I started to support Real Betis.