Though we remain unbeaten in our last five games in all competitions, the draw against Racing left us all feeling like we had just suffered a loss. Our aloof but always colourful president accurately described the clash as “a mini-fiasco.” Here are some of our post-game notes.
Following yesterday’s victory over Espanyol that included Simao’s emotional farewell to the Colchonero faithful, Atlético head into the Christmas break rehabilitated having quickly amassed a four game unbeaten streak that included three shutouts. But will a return to action in 2011 without Simao on the squad spoil all the fun?
Following Atlético’s match at Aris last night, manager Quique Sánchez Flores expressed his thoughts about the team’s defeat in their Europa League opener. The coach felt that “we could have avoided the loss.” Rojiblanco team captain Antonio López spoke about his side’s disappointment with the result.
Quique Sánchez Flores doesn’t want to rush Filipe Luís back into action. The star left-back came in from Deportivo la Coruña this summer to much fanfare and most Atlético supporters expected the Brazilian to be an instant starter this season. Upon his arrival, however, Quique sat down with Filipe and told him that the club wanted to be cautious with him, given that he was coming off recent recovery from his horrific ankle injury.
José Manuel Jurado is to sign for German side Schalke 04 on a four-year deal, Atlético manager Quique Sánchez Flores has confirmed. The young Spanish midfielder brought an end to his four-year spell at Atlético in style on Monday night, scoring the opening goal in Atleti’s 4-0 win over Sporting Gijón.
The competition between forwards Diego Costa and Eduardo Salvio was under the spotlight throughout the summer, as the pair were battling it out for Atleti’s last non-EU roster slot. Initially, reports had tabbed the Brazilian as the man to be released, but he eventually convinced Quique that he was the right man for the team’s third striker role.
Atlético faces Montevideo Wanderers tonight at 19:00 GMT+1 in the third place match of the Trofeo Colombino in Huelva. The Uruguayan side was defeated 2-0 Tuesday by event hosts Recreativo Huelva. The Rojiblancos suffered their third consecutive pre-season defeat in a 1-0 loss to Sporting Gijón last night. Atleti will be looking for a morale boosting victory in what will be its last preparation game prior to the UEFA Supercup engagement with Inter on 27 August.
Quique Sánchez Flores is growing increasingly concerned about the excess of players on his squad, especially considering the imminent clash with Inter little over a week away. Shortly after the conclusion of the 2009-10 campaign, Quique submitted his list of ruled out players for the 2010-11 season. Despite having been presented the coach’s list months in advance, Sporting Director Jesús García Pitarch has been largely ineffective at closing out relocation deals.
Fran Mérida, our first big signing of the the summer, appears to be living up to the hype. The talented young playmaker is reportedly set to start the 2010-11 season on the left wing, getting the nod ahead of Portuguese veteran Simão. The young midfielder signed for Atlético on a free transfer from Arsenal in late May.
Diego Forlán and Álvaro Domínguez joined their teammates today for a two hour training session. The duo had missed our friendly against Real Mallorca yesterday due to minor injuries. The players that started in our 3-2 loss either had a recuperative session with Miguel Peiró or worked out in the gym. Keko, Ibrahima and Paco Regalón hoped to stay with the first team this season but have been moved back to Atlético B.