Bucharest was the place where Atletico Madrid received a visit from Chelsea in the Champions League’s Round of 16. We got player ratings.
Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid had a chance to make a statement against Chelsea today in the UEFA Champions League. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, UEFA ruled they would have to play in a neutral zone. Bucharest was the place where the Colchoneros were considered locals for the first-leg against the Blues. One might think that the Colchoneros are learning from previous mistakes and they could attempt to play attacking football. But Diego Simeone doesn’t seem to understand he has players for that style.
Instead, he prefers to not risk anything when he realizes his opponent wants to maintain ball-possession. Thomas Tuchel knew what he wanted from the start of the game. As the Blues dominated most chances, players like Joao Felix didn’t have a chance to shine as they wanted. The youngster only had a couple of interesting opportunities but he bottled all of them. In the second half, we all had the feeling this defensive game would either end with no goals or get decided by a spectacular attempt.
Giroud and Felix’s overhead attempts.
Starting the second half, Joao Felix had a unique chance to score a goal through a bicycle kick but his shot went over the crossbar. Only a few minutes after that, Hermoso set Olivier Giroud for another one that the Frenchman didn’t miss. Right after the goal, the referee decided to disallow it after he thought there was an offside. But VAR intervened to let him know it was a legal goal.
This was the final result of the match in Bucharest between two of the most powerful clubs in the competition. Giroud was able to keep proving his worth as a Chelsea star against a disappointing Atletico Madrid. It might be time for someone to tell Simeone to stop using the same tactics over and over.
Atletico Madrid: Oblak (6), Savic (6), Felipe (6), Hermoso (3), Saul (6), Koke (6), Lemar (6), Llorente (6), Correa (6), Felix (7), Suarez (6).
Bench: Lodi (5), Torreira (5), Dembele (5), Vitolo (5).
Chelsea: Mendy (7), Azpilicueta (7), Alonso (7), Rudiger (7), Christensen (7), Kovacic (6), Jorginho (7), Mount (7), Giroud (8), Hudson-Odoi (6), Werner (6).
Bench: Ziyech (7), Kante (7), James (7), Pulisic (7), Havertz (6).
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