La Liga: Málaga 0 – 0 Atlético

Goalless draw in Diego Simeone's first game as Atlético coach

Goalless at Málaga (AS)

Goalless at Málaga (AS)

Diego Simeone’s first game in charge of Atlético has ended in a goalless draw.

Málaga were kept out at La Roseleda on Saturday night: 0-0.

In his first game as coach of Atleti, Diego Simeone surprisingly left Adrián and Arda Turan out of the team. The coach started in a 4-5-1 formation with Juanfran and Salvio on the wings and Radamel Falcao up top.

Cholo asked for more aggression from his team and after only 12 seconds we committed our first foul, a clear signal of our intentions.

Nevertheless Málaga created the first opportunity of the match. Buonanotte, who was linked to Atleti earlier this week, had a good chance, but his angle was so difficult that he was unable to beat Courtois.

Thibaut Courtois made another spectacular save from a powerful header by Málaga striker Rondón.

After half an hour of play Atleti finally crawled out of their shell. Salvio skipped past his marker and laid the ball off for Diego. The Brazilian’s shot took a deflection and came back off the crossbar.

Shortly before the break there was a good chance for Toulalan, but the Frenchman failed to get his head on the ball from close range after yet another free kick for the home side.

Málaga had dominated the first half, but Atleti improved in the second. The team played further forward, but either side created few chances.

Atleti’s biggest opportunity came in the 71st minute. A header by Diego Godín was saved off the line by Santi Cazorla.

Just minutes before the end Atlético almost snatched the full three points. Juanfran dribbled inside the box and found Diego, but his shot whistled past the post.

It was the last chance of the game in what turned out to be a dull affair. In the second half Málaga seemed exhausted after their Copa del Rey defeat in midweek, while Atleti seemed more concerned with keeping out their opponents instead of trying to score themselves.

The point gained on Saturday was only our second in all away games this season. After eight games on the road we are yet to win away from the Vicente Calderón.

A positive to take from this result is that Atleti looked committed to keep a clean sheet and did well defensively, but there is still a lot of work to be done.

Next up for the Colchoneros is the home game against Villarreal next Sunday. We will be without Álvaro Domínguez and Luis Perea, who both will have to sit out through suspension after being booked tonight.

Line-up: Courtois; Perea, Godín, Domínguez, Filipe; Gabi, Tiago, Diego, Juanfran, Salvio (“68 Arda); and Falcao (“89 Adrián).

Goals: –

  • 7th

    luis perea,dominguez,godin, a good chaaaaance for manquilo or kader and puildooooooo.

    anyway, that was a boring match. lets see how it goes from villarreal.

  • Andres

    In which matches got Godín his five yellows? I see only four (Sevilla, Athletic, Espanyol, Málaga)

  • Ringo

    I watch football for entertainment reasons, this wasn’t exactly entertaining. I was too bored to keep attention on the screen the second half.

    A clean sheet is nice, though.

  • Good results for simeone cuz it was vs big spending malaga

  • osmanson

    meh. Expected better strategy, especially after looking at the starting 11. If you are benching Turan, you should have a better reason that this.

  • falcao

    salvio was very good,but i think that Simeone maked a mistake because not putting Adrian or Turan in first 11

  • Javi

    That was ugly. It showed we like to kick the opponents and defense got a bit tighter. But boy was that ugly and booooring. I hope Simeone has something else up his sleeve…

  • SoLobo

    Am I the only one that didn’t find it boring? It wasn’t a great game, but it was fairly good. We had very good defense and we had our chances to score. And yes, kicking opponents is another part of the game. We weren’t blatant, we were strong, and that ‘s fine by me. We need to wait and see if this is our new philosophy.

  • ali_

    i think its better kick the opponent on their side (so they cant use counterattack against us) than let them go trough to our side. tiago and gabi are very talented in this… our defense was pretty good. dominguez and godín was the best i think.

  • Matthijs

    I agree with SoLobo.

    It wasn’t a great match, but it is a start. We need to grow, for the second time this season I saw an Atletico that are willing to fight and play aggresive. Normally we are pussies! The defence was pretty good, the only mistake was that Adrian or Arda was not starting.

  • Davide

    What game were the rest of you watching? Sometimes i think some of you people think you are supporting Barcelona and not Atlético.

    It was good performance from Atlético. Malaga away is a difficult game, specially conidering our away record since august and the fact that we are mid-table and not Barcelona.

    I think it was a good point we took. Malaga will deffinately be more upset than us.

    Right now i don’t want Atlético to play beautiful football, i want us to get points, even if it is the ugly and boring way.

    We created enough chances to spoil Malagas party. I am satisfied that Simeone did something about the defensive tacticts as it seems.

    Once the defensive instuctions are set, then the team will move on to creating new offensive tactics.

  • Sam

    I saw Malaga with the ball, completing passes, and Atletico chasing it around. If it had been a better team, and cazorla had been a player with a better shot, things could have gone sour quick.

    Unless its going to be a style without creative play until the last two minutes, I think Arda NEEDS to start.

    Good looks coming from Diego though.

  • Ringo

    Of course I want Atleti to gain points and I’ll have patience with the play, but it’s just that I won’t mind missing a game if it looks dull. Momentarily it’s okay if the games are, but I don’t want to look at it. I probably will, since I’m very interested in the progress.

  • Javi Lozoya

    It was an ugly and boring game and Ringo is right, people watch football for fun and entertaining reasons, just ask the Atletico supporters who stopped going to the Vicente Calderon, why they do it?, because they got tired and bored and they have all the right to complain and not go to the stadium because football is supposed to fun and exciting, and it’s no use to pay for a match ticket if your not gonna see something entertaining.

  • Javi Lozoya

    Good performance by Atletico?, defensively yes, offensively hell no, the counterattacking strategy was awfully performed, and the only chance we created was the ball crossed by Salvio that Diego tried to score and deflect it and was almost a goal and that was it. I agree with Sam, Malaga dominated us from all angles, the problem was their bad aim, and the good saves by Courtois, he is just amazing, no doubt he has a bright future, it’s really great to have him on our side even though he is on loan from Chelsea, but about Malaga, they could’ve easily won this match.

  • shlomgar

    Davide I’m with you. The game looked good for us. There is one problem for us in the game flow and I’m sorry to say it’s Diego. He is very tallented but his decision making is too slow. It cost us in good opportunities.

    An aggressive Atleti is the one for me…

    Good luck Simeone

  • Davide

    Javi Lozoya//

    Dude, relax… I have been following Atlético for 20 years now.

    If you think the reason Atlético supporters sometimes don’t go to games is because Atlético lacks fun and excitement then you know absolutely nothing about the club and the culture around it.

    First of all, it’s because of the economy in Spain and the increase in ticket prices. Alot of people just can’t afford to buy season tickets anymore or go to every game.

    Atlético supporters have always supported their team, whatever brand of football have been played. We do not usually care how we win games, just as long as we win.

    Colchoneros do not go to see entertainment as the main agenda, we go because because we love the club, and as long as we can afford to buy tickets.

    You talk alot but seem to have no clue what makes the club and supporters of this beautiful club tick.

  • Javi Lozoya

    @Davide , with all due respect dude you’re the one who seems to have no clue about Atleti, and you’re the one needs to chill, just because you think you are and Atletico die hard supporter and everybody else isn’t it doesn’t make it true, I know the passion and excitement of supporting represents, but people are not fools and dull, neither they are puppets, look at all the comments about today’s match, all the people in this forum are Atletico fans and most of us think we played awful and we did, much to your annoyance of saying we are Barça and not Atletico supporters and you’re the only one who thinks we did a good job and in that case I think you need some glasses man, because we played ugly and boring, and the issue is not about the club, Atletico is a great club, the issue is about what surrounds the club like Gil and Cerezo who have turned Atletico in a circus, and people are tired and bored of seeing Atleti in the shape the club is now and has been for about 16 years know, then obviously the bad results come afterwards, and so people are tired and bored to see and unattractive team year after year and they eventually lose a bit of interest in going to the stadium but not in supporting their team, again much to your annoyance.

  • davie

    it might not have been pretty football but defence was compact and kept a clean sheet and remember only reason we didnt win is the ref disalowed falcaos header when it should have stood

  • SoLobo

    I just can’t understand what some of us were expecting to see! If some of you NEED to see good football, you may consider supporting another team. And if you ask why do I support Atleti, well…..

  • Metro

    Err, it’s not just Davide – I think as well we played a pretty good match. Yes, we were very defensive in the first half, but we were good in what we tried, we were disciplined. Courtois only had to make like two good saves (one was a set-piece situation when Perea wasn’t up to the task). In the second half we showed much better (and more offensive) game and I honestly think we were better than Malaga. We had our chances to win the match.

    I personally saw a team who fought hard and was agressive. We were concentrated and the team followed the plan well. I love when I see my team fighting till the end. And don’t forget Malaga had only lost once this season at home, so it was a very valuable point against our direct rival.

  • Jose Ignacio Perez-Laorga

    boring?? this was a great game, if we think about how bad we were in our last game against albacete. Good defense and our midfield looks solid. Still no connection with falcao but it will all come in time, we just have to trust Cholo!!

  • Lubo

    Well, I’m another one, who thinks it wasn’t boring at all! Solid defending – Perea was bad, but better than before, Godin along with Dominguez were great, Filipe had weaker match. I liked our central midfielders, who were pulling the strings, setting the tempo and were not afraid to be more physical and concede some fouls. When you compare this performance with our last 2 matches, it was 180° turnaround.
    But I’m not sure about Falcao. I mean, he is great and would be awesome when given time to gel with the others, but I think he will go next summer.

  • falcao
  • falcao
  • ratchet

    Falcao wont go. He scores his goals and hes doing ok. We did pretty well roll on villareal

  • Martin Rosenow

    Perea and Domínguez will be suspended against Villarreal.

    There was some confusion in the media as to a late card for time wasting at the end of the game. Some reported that it was Godín, others that it was Perea, and others that both Perea and Godín saw yellow.

    The referee’s official report did not include Godín, so it will be Miranda and Godín at the back against Villarreal.

  • Sweden

    Good to hear! Manquillo from start ?

  • Heißenberg

    we played a good game, point is what we came for and point is what we got, we must be satisfied.
    Defence looked good, we were agressive… maybe could of made couple more chances though but I am not unhappy.

  • Javi Lozoya

    Probably not, perhaps Juanfran plays as right back.

  • Heißenberg

    if Perea is suspended and if Silvio is still injured then Antonio Lopez should be the starter, I guess. He didn’t play a lot of matches this season but when he played, he played good (except against Barcelona).

  • Javi

    All I have to say it that it is pathetic how we are brought to “appreciate” the play of a bad boring team. Admit it this team sucks, and yes there was a bit of improvement in attitude and defensive tightness and I’m glad we pulled a point from la Rosaleda, but come on guys, we cannot lower our standards to this. We need to demand more from this team, because of the instution it is and because of the players we have-that is showing respect for the team. And having my point of view does not make me a lesser Atleti fan. I dont have to defend my colors here, I have defended this team since I was born and I have the right to criticize what they are doing. Feeling good about taking a point from Malaga when they were beaten up by their Copa game and they were vulnerable and played bad…dont think so. Like I said, glad we got a point, it is way too early to judge him but if Simeone does not have anything better than this in the next few games, we are screwed again.

  • SoLobo

    Just when did we play better?? When?? Having Aguero that can dribble anyone doesn’t mean that you have a team. This is our standards. This is not a bad and boring team. This is a good team, as it always was. And we love it because it is good. If we wanted to see football from outer space and win titles, we would have chosen another team.

  • falcao

    you can choose but i won’t…

  • Javi

    We played better when we won the Europa league, the supercup and we were finalist with the copa, much better than now

  • javi

    We played better when we won the doblete, we played better during the 70s and 80 when RM and Barsa feared us, and when no second rate Spanish team looked forward to taking ponits from the Vicente Calderon, like now. Maybe you didnt get to see and live those teams and your only point of reference is the mediocrity that we are now, and have been for over a decade, so if that is the case, I can see your point. But i have seen and lived a better Atleti, and this is not acceptable.

  • javi

    These might be your standards but not mine, I want a better team and better directors, I want to win in the Camp Nou and in the Bernabeu, like before, I want to be a challenge for the Campions league, I want to feel proud of my team again. Those are my standards.
    We dont belong were we are now.

  • SoLobo

    OK, I follow Atletico only for like 5-6 years now, but I can’t accept that we were playing better when we won the Europa. We were a better team against Fulham? Against Liverpool? Against Valencia? Against Galatasaray? Against Sporting Lisbon? These matches should be our standards? Really? What ‘s the difference between these matches and our last one against Malaga? And for sure, we are not bad and boring!

  • SoLobo

    We all want an even better team, but admit it, we support Atleti and not Real or Barcelona for our own reasons. We may not win titles often, but when we win them, it ‘s like… hm… I have no words! Supporting Real or Barcelona would be boring. Winning and winning titles and buying the best players… Atletico is like life. You can feel the joy and you can feel the pain too. But you are always fighting. How can Atletico be boring? It ‘s just the opposite! I can repeat the words by Simeone’s son: “You suffer, of course, but it is a big club”.

  • Ringo

    Of course it’s a big club, the chosen play momentarily just isn’t very attractive, it’s neither fast nor great positioning offensively.
    I don’t know what Simeone’s plans are for this team and he didn’t have a preseason, so we’ll have to wait what will come out of it.
    But with the squad available, I’m positive the play could’ve had more action and ideas behind it.
    Diego should become less individualistic, for example, to create more fluid attacks, which will gave the attackers more space to show their skills, otherwise it might be even better to replace him with Adrian, so the classic counterattack football could be played, but Diego’s gifted, so he should be able to make faster decisions and passes.

    But, even though, in my opinion, the games aren’t full of action, the team should be given time, again. Resultwise it’s nice to see Atleti made Malaga weaker by it’s aggressive, defensive play, but entertainmentwise, results aren’t enough for me.
    I’ll keep on supporting Atleti, I’ll probably just pay less attention to the game when it’s on (of course it will be on, but I won’t concentrate on it if I’m getting sleepy or something).

    So, Aupa Atleti.
    And may the attraction grow back 🙂

    PS. I don’t think the Europa League Atleti played much better, Aguero and Forlan was a pretty fluid couple and Reyes was in great form, but other than that the team was happy to have such luck on multiple occasions.
    I loved to see them win, but they didn’t win with great play, in my opinion.

  • javi

    I was at the Supercup final and I thought we outclassed one of the best teams in the world at the time with Etoo and Snyder in top form. Reyes and Tiago and Degea were great, he even stopped a penalti. Much better than anything weve done this season.

  • Davide

    Agreed about Europa League. We did not play much better than now. We were extremely lucky to lift that trophy. Fluke was our best friend.

    You can not base Atléticos brand of football on one game. Inter went to sleep in that game, happens to everyone, even Barcelona.

    Atlético did not make Inter look bad, it was more like Inter made us look good.

    What about thrashing of Udinese and Schalke? Sometimes we do play these brilliant games (at home) but it is not traditionally our brand of football.

    I do agree that i do expect much more and lot better football when playing at the Calderón, but can not understand people complaining about the point taken at Malaga.

    We played a good game. Malagas home stats Vs our away stats so far this season should have actually resulted in thrashing.

    I know some people are never happy, but i saw some improvement to build on. A point at Malaga is very good considering the current situation and a very welcome break from our away form.

    With that said i will NOT except same kind of football like we played at Malaga when playing at home or against weaker teams.

    But team deserves credit for point against Malaga.

  • Metro

    Javi, you do realise that that Inter side was already on decline? They had Benitez and we all know what happened later on. They were clueless for rest of the season.

    You guys have to realise that we don’t have the same team anymore, who beat Schalke 4-0 or who gave us those crazy nights when we beat Barcelona. We don’t have Simao, we don’t have Forlan, we don’t have Agüero, we don’t have Maxi, we don’t have Reyes. We are a whole different team now. And you better forget about the doblete team..Molina, Solozabal, Caminero, young Simeone, Pantic, Kiko, Penev. You can’t even compare the Atleti nowadays to those guys.

    What I hated about our recent matches (before Simeone took over) was that we didn’t play with our hearts anymore, we were so dull on the pitch. Simeone made the team fight again against Malaga. The team was agressive and concentrated. That is exactly where you need to start from. If we go out all attack, we would be vulnerable in defence. We can’t afford that right now, we rather need some stability. We need stable results, we need to climb slowly in the table, we need to get to the CL again. If you ask me, a point against our direct rival away is a pretty good start for that. And Malaga weren’t beaten up by Real at all – I happened to see that match and Malaga controlled the first half there as well. Isco practically did whatever he wanted against Real.

    We need to give Simeone time and just see where he takes us. He can’t play tiki-taka like Barca does with Assuncao or Mario Suarez, he can’t play high-tempo game like Real does with Tiago or Gabi (or even Arda, considering he isn’t the fastest in the world. You can only play with the material you have. And you can’t blame Simeone for that, we all know the culprits are the evil twins.

  • javi

    Metro, that Inter team had just won the CL 2-0 against bayern Munich. We played better then than we play now. Lets see how things develop. Im giving Simeone a chance here, I have to. But like I said, i hope he has something else up his sleve.

  • Metro

    No, that team who won CL against Bayern was Mourinho’s Inter. We played against Benitez’ Inter. Inter have been pretty crap since then and players like Milito struggling to find the form.

    I don’t want to take anything away from us, we fully deserved the title, but that Inter side wasn’t as powerful as you think it was.

  • Javi

    Yes it was Benitez instead of Mou, but same players and it was played just a few weeks after they won the CL. In any event, I much more enjoyed watching that team than this one, at least for now.

  • Metro

    It was rather like few months, the CL final was played in May and the Supercup final in August. Benitez was the one who did the preseason with Inter and don’t forget that the players had to adjust new coaching style, tactics etc. Also don’t forget we’ve always been quite successful against Benitez and his teams.

    Like I said, we can’t blame Simeone. He is trying to do what he can with the players we have. It’s not his fault we no longer have a player like Kun.

  • Mais

    I watched the supercup with inter fans n every one of them complained about inters performance…mourinho or benitez, they just weren’t at 100% that night
    Of course I called them sore losers but can’t deny that they had a point

  • falcao
  • Mais

    Its interesting how some may look back to supercup as a high note though somewhat comparable performances this season didn’t garner too much support this season (udinese for example)

  • Mais

    Its interesting how some on this site may look back to supercup as a high note though somewhat comparable performances this season didn’t garner too much support (udinese for example)

  • Mais

    Weird my phone just had a spaz attack

  • k14

    Personally, I will take from this game that we almost scored three goals (plus a disallowed goal).
    We were the side that almost stole the full 3 points on several chances, possession and attractiveness isnt my thing, I wanna see efficient Atleti that keeps winning those 3 points.
    The intensity of the challenge is what makes the game enjoyable, not the style of play, or at least it is to me.

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