Atlético Madrid have failed to pass the first serious test of the new LaLiga season. Villarreal came to visit Wanda Metropolitano and eventually took a hard-fought victory back to Castellón: 0-2. Yéremy Pino and Gérard Moreno scored the goals on behalf of the guests.
Diego Simeone, the coach of Atlético Madrid, came up with a surprise in his team. He had Axel Witsel, midfielder by profession, act as a central defender in a five-man defense. The Belgian was flanked by Stefan Savic and Reinildo. That threesome did not have to take into account Arnaut Danjuma at Villarreal, because the Dutchman is still injured. Giovani lo Celso was posted in his place on the left wing.
Within a minute the ball could have been in the net. Gerónimo Rulli, the goalkeeper of Villarreal, had to act when he saw a bullet from Álvaro Morata coming towards him. The Argentinian turned the bet and saw the flag go up afterwards, although it didn’t look like offside. Anyone who thought that was the start of a smashing half with opportunities for the home team, however, was disappointed. The guests, led by trainer Unai Emery, seized control and looked for opportunities. They even seemed to take the lead, but Gérard Moreno’s goal was disallowed because it was preceded by hands.
Also in the second half el Submarino Amarillo in control, without playing too many gigantic opportunities together. Atlético had to have few moments and it seemed to wait for the opening goal of the visitors in yellow. It fell twenty minutes before time. The Madrilenians were not able to clear the ball well and Pino took full advantage of that by picking up and finding the far corner: 0-1. That goal inspired Simeone’s men. Moments later, the equalizer was almost scored by Yannick Ferreira-Carrasco, who barely saw his header come off the line.
Throwing in the final phase los Rojiblancos really opened all registers and Villarreal had to pull out all the stops to keep the 0-1. However, Atlético’s final offensive had no effect and it even got the lid on the nose: Nahuel Molina became frustrated and took a red card and deep into injury time Moreno determined the final score at 0-2. An unpleasant evening for Atlético, because they remain on three points and see that Villarreal does come in six out of two. The yellow shirts are therefore in the top of LaLiga.
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