Our young goalkeeper Joel was the hero in the Trofeo Ramón de Carranza semi-final against Cádiz this evening. The canterano pulled off some great saves and stopped the decisive penalty in the shoot-out.
Quique Sánchez Flores started with a B-team; most of today’s starters will probably be reserves during the season. They did make for a spectacular match though, against a motivated home side.
In the first half most of our danger came from one man. José Manuel Jurado created two opportunities, but was twice denied by Cádiz goalkeeper Dani.
At the back, Juanito seemed shaky and slow on two occassions, but Joel came to the rescue when he twice stopped a forward one-on-one.
Eduardo Salvio then failed to capitalise on a goalkeeping error from Dani but couldn’t find the back of the net. The first half ended goalless.
After an hour Quique brought on the big guns. With Simão, Reyes, Agüero and later Raúl García on, the match opened up more. The match toughened up after the referee refused to take action on the many fouls Jurado suffered, which led to frustration by the Atlético players. Jurado and especially Raúl García reacted by lunging in.
Minutes after he had come on, Reyes was brought down in the penalty area, but neither the referee nor the linesman spotted the clear foul.
The linesman made another big mistake, when he didn’t notice a Jurado lob had clearly passed the goal line, before it was cleared by Cádiz. Atlético deserved to go one up, but instead frustration set in and Luis Perea conceded a penalty not a minute later. Aarón sent Joel the wrong way to open the scoring.
Atleti reacted instantly, but Agüero saw his shot go wide. A few minutes later the Argentine forward again found himself in a lot of space and was clumsily brought down by the goalkeeper. Agüero himself converted the penalty just before full time; 1-1.
In the minutes that followed El Kun should have handed us the win, but one-on-one with Dani, Agüero seemed to trip and ultimately couldn’t get past the goalkeeper. Before the final whistle Cádiz defender Silva received a straight red card for a dangerous challenge on José Antonio Reyes.
The match went straight to penalties, in which Joel got the opportunity to crown himself Man of the Match. The young goalkeeper had already pulled off some great saves and managed to keep out the final penalty in shoot-out sudden death, handing Atlético a place in the final of the Trofeo Ramón de Carranza.
Simão, Raúl García, Antonio López, Agüero, Reyes and Camacho all (spectacularly) converted their penalties, with only Jurado missing from the spot.
Line-up: Joel; Valera, Juanito, Luis Perea, López; Camacho, Mario Suárez; Salvio, Jurado, Alberto Perea; Diego Costa
Subs: Agüero, Simão, Reyes, Raúl García, Ujfalusi
Goals: 1-0, Aarón (pk); 1-1, Agüero (pk)
On Sunday Atlético will take on the winner of Espanyol – Sevilla.