It was a night to remember in the Vicente Calderón, as Atlético Madrid put seven goals past bottom side Granada to consolidate their position at the top of the La Liga table.
Yannick Carrasco hit a stunning hat-trick, before a double from substitute Nico Gaitán and late goals from Ángel Correa and Tiago secured a 7-1 triumph against the struggling side.
Granada may not have won all season, but it was they who took the lead early on and in emphatic fashion as well, former Barcelona man Isaac Cuenca volleying past Jan Oblak to put the visitors in front.
It was only the third goal that Atleti had conceded all season, and one that spurred the home team – specifically Yannick Carrasco – into action.
The Belgian has been given more responsibility this season and has featured as a starter in six of our eight matches. He was the man who came up with the equaliser, smashing home after Granada failed to clear from a corner.
Carrasco then put Atleti in front just before half-time with a deflected effort, before adding a third just past the hour mark after good work from Antoine Griezmann on the right hand side.
That wasn’t enough for the red and whites though, who smelt blood and went for the kill, adding a fourth almost straight form kick-off as substitute Nico Gaitán stretched to convert his first Atleti goal with his first touch.
The Argentine international hasn’t had much of a chance so far this season but will have done no harm to his chances this evening, scoring the fifth ten minutes from the end after cutting inside and firing past Guillermo Ochoa.
Compatriot Ángel Correa, who had an excellent match as a starter behind the front two, then got the goal he deserved minutes later with a rasping drive from outside the box.
Like Carrasco, the 21 year-old looks to have upped his level this season and is really starting to shine as the team flourishes in attack. Tiago added the seventh in the dying moments from close range.
It was just the response fans would’ve wanted after having fallen a goal behind, and a result that will do wonders for our confidence as we look to make inroads in domestic and continental competition.
Having lost their spot at the top following Sevilla and Barcelona’s wins earlier in the day, Atleti put a statement out with this result and are playing as well as anybody in Europe.
With 21 goals scored and just 3 conceded, the team are firing on all cylinders and will surely be in contention for all three trophies this season. This may well be the best all-round team we’ve seen since Simeone came in.
Surprisingly to some, it wasn’t the first time we’ve scored seven under Cholo, having beaten Getafe 7-0 back in our title winning 2013/14 season. Carrasco’s hat-trick is the first from an Atleti player since Griezmann against Athletic in 2014.
Next up, we travel to Russia for the return of the Champions League, tournament newcomers FC Rostov the opponents in a match that could go a long way to determining the outcome of the group.
Jan Oblak – 6
Nothing he could do about the goal, although he will be disappointed not to have kept a clean sheet. Fans showed their appreciation by singing his name on multiple occasions in the second half.
Juanfran – 7
Got forward to great effect in the first half particularly, putting in a number of good crosses and constantly putting himself in dangerous positions.
Diego Godín – 7
Didn’t have a great deal to do after Cuenca’s wondergoal, but helped the team respond and kept the defence secure for the team to go on and win the match.
Stefan Savic – 7
See above. Made a few forays forward in the first half, will be looking to get off the mark for Atlético soon having scored for Montenegro during the international break.
Filipe Luís – 7
Here, there and everywhere. Our September Player of the Month continued his good form, constantly involved and playing a part in a few of the goals. Best left-back in the world?
Gabi – 7
Goes about his work quietly, but does a job that is invaluable both on days like this and in matches where we have to defend. Was fouled in the build-up to the Granada goal, but the referee waved play on.
Koke – 8
Looks a new player since dropping back into the deeper midfield role. Not that he was playing badly before, but he really looks at home now in his more natural role. Exceptional footballer.
Yannick Carrasco – 9 (Man of the match)
The talisman for Atleti this evening. Cholo told him to shoot more, and he repaid the boss’ faith with a stunning hat-trick. All three were what you would call striker’s goals, a weapon which will take his game to another level.
Ángel Correa – 8
Perhaps his best performance as a starter for the club. Involved and positive throughout, and although not everything came off, he does things that nobody else can. Got the goal he deserved, and in some style too.
Antoine Griezmann – 7
The most surprising thing about today’s result was that Atleti scored seven and Griezmann didn’t get any of them. Did set up Carrasco’s hat-trick goal with a lovely cut-back, before getting a deserved rest late on.
Kevin Gameiro – 6
Like Griezmann, he came off early but may be a little disappointed not to add to his goal stats today. Ran hard as usual and looked to get into the right positions, probably would’ve scored had he stayed on.
Nico Gaitán – 8
Hasn’t had too much playing time as of late, but looked right at home when he came on and helped himself to a couple of goals, both of which were well taken. Hope to see more of him soon.
Tiago – 7
Great to see him back on the scoresheet after his horrific leg break last year. Will be important this season with Augusto’s injury.
Fernando Torres – 6
Like Gameiro, he would’ve wanted to get in on the goalscoring action but didn’t get the chances. Didn’t see a great deal of the ball during his time on the pitch.
How do you sum up a performance like this? Are we being a little harsh not giving Carrasco a 10?