Thursday, July 7

Atlético’s final for the League is played at the Camp Nou

  • Simeone is looking for his first victory on the road against Barcelona. “There is always a first time in life,” he says.

  • The rojiblancos need to win to continue leading and depend on themselves to be champions

  • The Argentine coach does not have any casualties and can count on the entire squad for the first time this season

Although there he celebrated his only league as a rojiblanco coach, Simeone has never won at the Camp Nou. It is clear to him, as with his hackneyed “game by game”. “Always, for everything, there is a first time in life”, he sentenced in the previous one of a special visit to the Barça, in which Athletic his title options are at stake, before the last chance to maintain the initiative in the race for the League.

Then, in 2014, Atléticos came from not finishing off the league title in a match against Málaga at their stadium in which they did not go beyond a draw, but then against Barça they got what they needed. That defines what this Atlético is, who swims more fluidly the closer the water is to his neck, with no margin for error. “Then a championship would end, one winning was champion and the other used to draw and win. In this there are still a lot of points at stake, it has nothing to do with it, ”recalled Simeone as coldly as he could.

Even if I don’t want to say it: “The mental”Simeone replied dryly, without preamble or explanation, when questioned about the key that will decide the champion; the athletic victory would be a transcendental step towards the title, it would again put land in the middle with Barça, which came to lead by 12 points, and which could now leave at a distance of five points with nine to play.

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With the draw or with the defeat, Simeone’s team would begin to travel through marshy waters: it would leave the Real Madrid the leadership within reach, if the whites win in their Sunday game against the Seville; would finish confirming the downward trend of the entire second round and the Atléticos, for the first time in almost five months, would stop depending on themselves to win a League that they had almost in their hands after a first round with historical numbers.

After what Lodi, Giménez and Lemar, The headdresses, could return to work with the group on Thursday, Simeone has the entire squad for the League for the first time this season, for the decisive day. Even so, the Argentine coach has not rehearsed with Joao Felix as a starter, in tow with his physical problems and his lack of regularity. Nor does Correa point to eleven, with Llorente and Carrasco as flanking by the bands of the great red-and-white hope: Luis Suarez.

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