Atlético suffered only their second loss of the present league campaign in Almería on Saturday, but it just so happened to be their second loss in the same week. Much has and will continue to be made about referee Fernando Teixeira Vitienes’ atrocious officiating on the evening, and rightfully so, but Atleti have overcome adverse or blown calls all season long. Not on this accursed night, though.
Atlético grinded out a narrow 1-0 road victory over Málaga on Saturday to briefly take over the top spot in La Liga. For a while, it appeared as if recent history would repeat itself. Los Rojiblancos’ previous two visits to La Rosaleda had both ended in scoreless draws, so when the 70th minute mark was
Atlético fooled around with Valencia in the opening half of Sunday’s encounter, waiting until after the break to land all the heavy blows in another knockout performance at the Vicente Calderón that ended in a 3-0 rout. Valencia came into the match having scored in their previous 26 league games, but Atleti completely snuffed out their attack on the night.
Atlético were able to best Elche 2-0 after a fiercely contested first half in which the scrappy hosts matched Simeone’s men in guts and intensity at the Estadio Martínez Valero. Second half goals by the Colchoneros’ dynamic duo of Koke and Diego Costa were enough to put out Fran Escribá’s charges’ fire.
Atlético pounded Getafe into submission on Saturday with a performance that bordered on downright cruelty. The 7-0 annihilation was the worst loss in los Azulones‘ history. The scoreboard also happened to mirror Atleti’s record at ‘Cholo Castle’ this season, with Simeone’s men picking up their seventh home win on the trot.
It was always going to be a tall order to come out of the Madrigal with the three points on Sunday. Without several key starters and visiting one of the league’s top clubs, Atlético were lucky to even come away with anything at all against a very strong Villarreal side. Given the circumstances and the opponent, a 1-1 draw is by no means a huge disappointment.
Atlético soundly defeated Athletic Bilbao on Sunday, shutting out their Basque foes 2-0 for their sixth straight win at the Vicente Calderón. Defended by 52,000 strong for this ‘Fan Club Day’ encounter, ‘Cholo Castle’ remains unconquered in the 2013/14 campaign.
There was no let up in Atlético’s 5-0 thrashing of Real Betis at the Vicente Calderón on Sunday night. Literally from start to finish, the struggling Verdiblancos found themselves picking the ball out of their own net. The Rojiblanco faithful were treated to a delightful spectacle that began with the fastest goal in club history scored by Óliver Torres–the player that sparked the most pre-game buzz given his inclusion in the starting line-up in replacement of the ailing Arda Turan.
Relax. It was bound to happen. At least, that’s likely what many members of the Rojiblanco faithful kept telling themselves when their beloved Atlético’s bid for a perfect season in La Liga (and a chance to take sole possession of first place) was spoiled by Espanyol on Saturday. Just because it was inevitable didn’t mean it hurt any less for some of us though.
Despite their clear superiority for most of the afternoon, Atlético struggled to dispose of Celta Vigo at the Vicente Calderón on Sunday.
Ultimately, a Diego Costa brace was enough to extend the club’s record league start to eight straight wins.