Sunday, April 14, 2024
HomeFootballSaul Niguez only needs three minutes: Atletico celebrate successful BVB dress rehearsal

Saul Niguez only needs three minutes: Atletico celebrate successful BVB dress rehearsal

Atletico Madrid won 2:1 at Villarreal late on ahead of their Premier League clash with Dortmund. Joker Saul Niguez needed just three minutes to be crowned match-winner

The first home defeat of the season (0:3 against Barcelona) saw Atletico slip out of the Champions League places before the international break. Two weeks later, however, the Rojiblancos were given the chance to regain fourth place – thanks to city rivals Real, who defeated Bilbao (2-0) on Easter Sunday.

The starting position seemed to motivate the visitors. In the sixth minute, Samuel Lino missed the lead after a dream pass from Griezmann, one of four new players compared to the Barca defeat

Villarreal is Witsel’s favorite opponent

Witsel proved to be even more ruthless a short time later. In the dress rehearsal for the Champions League quarter-final first leg against his former club Dortmund – there is no league game this weekend due to the Copa del Rey final – the Belgian nodded in Riquelme’s corner kick (9′). It was his second goal in a Colchoneros shirt. He scored both goals against Villarreal

After Llorente had then missed a higher lead (17′), Simeone’s team focused on defensive work. The disciplined Madrilenians mostly defended with a back four in front of their deep-lying five-man backline. The plan worked: The “yellow submarine” came close, but did not create a great scoring chance in the first half.

Sörloth capitalizes on Griezmann’s mistake

This was to change immediately after the restart: Moments after Griezmann lost the ball, Sörloth netted through the legs of Savic (50′). It was the quick reward for the improved performance after the restart.

Villarreal remained the more active team after the equalizer and allowed far fewer counter-attacks than in the first 45 minutes. However, opportunities continued to be in short supply, meaning there were many signs of a draw

Parejo misses, Saul Niguez is very deliberate

But a goal was suddenly in the air in the closing stages. First Morata headed onto the crossbar (84′), then Parejo shot over from a promising position (86′). That proved to be his revenge: just moments after Parejo’s miss, Saul Niguez, who had come on as a substitute three minutes earlier, curled the ball into the net with his inside hand (87′) – the 2:1 was the winning goal, as the Rojiblancos did not allow anything more in the remaining minutes. The win saw the madridistas climb back up to fourth place, passing Bilbao



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