La Liga: Athletic 3 – 0 Atlético
Atlético Madrid’s struggles in away games continued on Sunday night as the Colchoneros lost 3-0 against Athletic Club.
The goals in San Mamés were scored by Mikel San José, Markel Susaeta and Óscar de Marcos.
Atleti were outclassed on all parts of the pitch and the score would have been much higher if it hadn’t been for Thibaut Courtois.
From the first minute on Athletic were the more dangerous side and Óscar de Marcos should’ve put his team ahead after just 90 seconds into the game. His attempt was soon followed by Aduriz who volleyed wide as Athletic put the pressure on us early on.
Diego Simeone was without Gabi (suspended) and Falcao (injured), and decided to rest Miranda, Mario, Koke and Adrián ahead of Thursday’s Copa del Rey semi final clash against Sevilla. But without so many regulars Atleti looked out of sync and vulnerable defensively.
The only field player that played up to his usual level was Filipe, who seemed extra motivated after earning a call up to the Brazilian national team. On two occasions the left back found himself in an great position to score, with his first try going just inches wide of Iraizoz’ goal.
At the end of the first half Emre, one of Simeone’s surprises, was at the end of an excellent attack but the Turk shot straight at Gorka. It was one of the few times Atleti looked dangerous, as all the action was happening at the other end.
Thibaut Courtois kept his team in it with an amazing stop with his feet to deny Susaeta and later breathed a sigh of relief when Ander Herrera’s scorcher flew by his goal.
After the break Courtois again stopped Susaeta with an amazing save, this time using his head. But from the ensuing corner the Basques finally scored the goal they deserved as Mikel San José headed in the opening goal.
Atlético struggled to create their chances, although Raúl García came close. He hit the post after Gorka Iraizoz got a hand to his low drive.
Meanwhile our Belgian goalkeeper stopped attempts from De Marcos, Aduriz and Iraola, but he was finally beaten a second time by Susaeta in the 77th minute. The winger scored after a quick counter exposed the Atleti defence.
Shortly before the end Athletic Club again hurt Atleti on the break. This time De Marcos finished off what was a beautiful move by Bielsa’s men.
Line-up: Courtois; Juanfran, Cata Díaz, Godín, Filipe; Tiago, Emre (“63 Adrián); Raúl García, Arda Turan (“80 Mario Suárez), Cristian Rodríguez (“71 Koke); and Diego Costa.
Goals: 1-0 San José (“50); 2-0 Susaeta (“77); 3-0 De Marcos (“85)