If a demoralising 3-0 defeat wasn’t enough, Atlético Madrid will be without goalkeeper Jan Oblak for up to 4 months after he dislocated his shoulder against Villarreal on Monday night.
José María Giménez is also injured after limping out of training this morning with a foot problem, and will along with Tiago will undergo further testing to determine the severity of his injury.
With Filipe Luís and Augusto Fernández also out, the injuries come at the worst possible time for Diego Simeone in the midst of his worst run of form since taking over at Atlético in 2011.
Oblak in particular will be a huge loss, the Slovenian limping off at El Madrigal last night after uncharacteristically dropping the ball at the feet of Jonathan dos Santos to score the second goal.
He has been suffered from back problems in the past and has missed training on a number of times this season due to discomfort, and will now have to undergo shoulder surgery
Miguel Ángel Moyá – who came on in his place last night – will have to deputise, having not played in La Liga for 21 months and only just returning himself from injury a couple of weeks ago.
The 32 year-old goalkeeper performed well in 2014/15 when he was first choice, but it was the emergence of Oblak that helped Atleti solidify their defence and challenge for La Liga and the Champions League last year.
He wasn’t the only player to have to come off in the defeat to the yellow submarine, Tiago also came off after making the mistake for the first goal with knee pain and could face time on the sidelines.
Thankfully, it doesn’t seem as if it’s a serious problem, although Saturday’s match against Las Palmas may be too soon for him. Giménez is also doubtful.
Atlético’s season was thrown off track back in September when Augusto Fernández damaged knee ligaments against Deportivo. The Argentine has had to go through two lots of surgery and won’t be back until next season.
Giménez also spent over a month out after sustaining a hamstring injury in the same match, and Saúl, Torres and Gaitán have since spent time out with respective knocks.
It was then announced last week that Filipe Luís – one of our best performers for much of this season – would be out until new year with a thigh problem, having only just returned from another injury.
Last season around April time we suffered a shortage of central defenders, but this is the first time in a long time that Atlético have suffered a full injury crisis, adding fuel to the fire surrounding the team’s physical state this season.
Our drop in form has gotten people talking, with some suggesting that certain players have burned out and are therefore unable to reproduce the level they have shown in previous seasons.
With a two-window transfer ban kicking in next month, it’s certainly worrying and gives Cholo a selection problem ahead of Las Palmas, a game that we simply must win without any if’s or but’s.
Ángel Correa is suspended after picking up his fifth yellow card against Villarreal, so it looks like we may only have sixteen available players on Saturday. Youngster Caio is also away with Brazil U20’s.
Are Atleti suffering from burn out? Any players you want to see get chances in the coming weeks?